Facebook says number of government data requests up considerably

12_18_Facebook

12_18_Facebook

Facebook keeps on observing expanded solicitations for client information from governments around the world, as indicated by its most recent straightforwardness report.

We apply a rigorous approach to every government request we receive to protect the information of the people who use our services.

In total, the number of requests stood at 9,853 with the government asking for access to 13,752 user accounts and Facebook complying with 54% of these requests, which means that it handed over data in a majority of the requests. Facebook is restricted to what data it can share. Those requests rose from 64,279 in the second half of 2016 to 78,890. According to Facebook, the company restricted video of a school shooting in Mexico 20,506 times after receiving a request from Mexican law enforcement.

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Sonderby added Facebook "carefully scrutinize" each request received for account data to ensure it's legally sufficient. "If a request appears to be deficient or overly broad, we push back, and will fight in court, if necessary", Facebook's Deputy General Counsel Chris Sonderby said in a blog post.

Not all requests are secret, but 57 percent of those from the U.S. were accompanied with a non-disclosure agreement prohibiting the company from notifying the user.

Meanwhile, there were 52 disruptions of Facebook services in nine countries in the first half of 2017, compared to 43 in 20 countries in the second half of 2016. Apple also saw an increase in these requests past year. NSLs are controversial orders that enable United States authorities, commonly the Federal Bureau of Investigation, to secretly demand user information from companies without requiring a warrant.

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Please see the full report for more information.

Facebook removed 1,818,794 posts due to copyright infringement from the site in that period, and 685,996 posts from Instagram because of copyright infringement. More than 110,000 bits of Facebook content was expelled for trademark encroachment, with more than 37,000 expelled from Instagram. Facebook said 217,265 of substance in its informal community were expelled after it followed up on 81 percent of 14,279 claims in the principal half of the year.

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