Google publishes stats on government requests for user data

Google has published its latest Transparency Report, which presents the statistics for all government requests of user data. The number of these requests has increased from 28,000 in 2010 to over 90,000 in the past year. Over that period, the percentage of these requests that resulted in the production of some data for the requesting entity has also fallen from 76% to 65%.

Google also said that the US should update its Electronic Communications Privacy Act, which regulates government monitoring of communications, “to enable countries that commit to baseline privacy, due process, and human rights principles to make direct requests to US providers”. It believes that this will reduce incentives for dangerous investigative techniques that weaken human rights standards. In this context, Google also advocates for improvements to Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty processes, to ensure a robust and transparent framework for governing requests for data across jurisdictions.

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