Government requests to Google for information on users has spiked.

 

 

 

The number of requests from the government to Google for information on its users has increased by 29% in the last 6 months.  Google is one of the few companies that release these kinds of statistics to the public. The reason they give for doing this is that they want to raise awareness about the ECPA.

The ECPA is the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and it was enacted 25 years ago. It was set to provide people with protection and privacy against government intrusion but hasn’t been updated since it was made to reflect new advances in technologies. Because of this people are still massively vulnerable to government intrusion, with their ability to get access to users online information with out having to go through a judges approval like they would need to with a warrant. Google is just  one of many high tech companies that have formed the Digital Due Process coalition to advocate reform.

This isn’t the first time Google has attempted to rock the boat over government monitoring. Most of you probably remember back when Google refused to censor search results in China. Their refusal of this demand caused them to close up shop in a much of China. On the other hand companies like yahoo have no trouble with censoring or even monitoring and giving information on political dissidents.

http://www.digitaldueprocess.org/index.cfm?objectid=37940370-2551-11DF-8E02000C296BA163

http://m.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/10/google-data-requests/

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7 thoughts on “Government requests to Google for information on users has spiked.

  1. What kind of user information is being given out, and is it associated with an ip address or name?

    • Presumably whatever they gave out was what was requested in the subpoena, wiretap, or data request. So most likely both if they had them. It does mention that they recieved 92 requests to remove content on its services. The 92 requests totaled 757 individual pieces of content and Google complied with 63%. Some of the more notable requests were to remove videos of police brutality which thankfully Google denied.

  2. Yet another reason Google kicks ass. The more important question, however, is what does the government want to find out…

  3. That is very interesting. I wonder why the government requests have spiked? If people don’t become aware of these intrusions we are all going to be without any privacy online. I wonder if Facebook releases any info to the government.

  4. Pingback: U.S. Requests for Google User Data Spike 29 Percent in Six Months | Threat Level | Wired.com « Carpet Bomberz Inc.

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