Google: U.S. and India Lead Account Info Demands
June 18, 2012 1:42 PM
comment(s) - last by
U.S. feds issued 6,000+ info requests on 12,000+ accounts
Google Inc. (
) has increasingly been the subject of government inquiries of late in many regions, following accusations that it was
abusing smaller competitors
snooping on peoples' private communications
. But Google is pointing the finger right back at the government with its new
, which offers such details as traffic patterns/service disruptions by country and a
section on copyright takedown requests
I. Google Accuses "Western Democracies" of "Censorship"
Now it’s spilling more intimate details about countries' online demands. The company writes:
sections of the Transparency Report are refreshed in
, but government request data is updated in six-month increments because it’s a people-driven, manual process. Today we’re releasing data showing government requests to
remove blog posts or videos
or hand over
made from July to December 2011.
It calls the takedown requests (many of which were filed on the basis of defamation claims of government officials or on anti-terrorism grounds) and user data requests sometimes reasonable, but often "troubling". It bemoans, "It’s alarming not only because free expression is at risk, but because some of these requests come from countries you might not suspect—Western democracies not typically associated with censorship."
The U.S. led the user information requests, with nearly three times as many requests (6,321 requests) as the next closest country, India (2,207 requests). Brazil (1,615 requests), France (1,404 requests), Germany (1,426 requests), and the UK (1,455 requests) were also near the top in terms of quantity of requests.
The U.S. was number one... in user information requests. [Image Source: TheOriginalWinger]
The U.S. requests targeted 12,243 accounts. Google complied with 93 percent of the requests. Compliance in other regions was significantly lower -- for example in India Google only complied with 66 percent of requests.
It's interesting to note that Google may have actually committed a criminal act of defiance by posting information on the U.S. takedowns, despite not posting details of the takedowns. Much of information demands in the U.S. are
accomplished by National Security Letters
(NSLs), which have been considered illegal to talk about.
It's hard to imagine that Google's anonymized general statistics would land it in much hot water, but stranger things have happened. (It's also possible the information requests do not include NSL requests.)
II. Details on Blog/Video Takedowns
Regarding U.S. blog/video takedown requests, the site writes:
We received a request from a local law enforcement agency to remove a blog because of a post that allegedly defamed a law enforcement official in a personal capacity. We did not comply with this request, which we have categorized in this Report as a defamation request.
We received a request from a local law enforcement agency to remove 1,400 YouTube videos for alleged harassment. We did not comply with this request. Separately, we received a request from a different local law enforcement agency to remove five user accounts that allegedly contained threatening and/or harassing content. We terminated four of the accounts, which resulted in the removal of approximately 300 videos, but did not remove the remaining account with 54 videos.
We received a court order to remove 218 search results that linked to allegedly defamatory websites. We removed 25% of the results cited in the request.
The U.S. and other nations were a bit takedown happy at times. [Image Source: AP Photo]
Google says that it complies with 65 percent of court orders worldwide in terms of government requests, and only complies with 47 percent -- roughly one out of every two -- informal requests.
One interesting tidbit -- China's conspicuous absence in the government request chart was likely due to two factors. First, the target windows was July to December 2011, at which time some Google services like YouTube
were still inaccessible
following the company's
brief spat and total ban
in the nation. Second Google apparently agreed to withhold some details, a fact it reveals, writing, "We have withheld details about one request because we have reason to believe that the Chinese government has prohibited us from full disclosure."
So Google may even have been forced to censor its report on censorship.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Still think ...
6/18/2012 3:30:01 PM
Absolutely. Despite my display name I lived in the US for a few years early last decade. Throughout my formative years I was always taught that the United States was the bastion of freedom, yet with all of the regulations, permits and bureaucracy at all levels of government, the draconian "war on drugs", the aforementioned Patriot Act and more, that mirage quickly evaporated.
RE: Still think ...
6/18/2012 5:20:58 PM
It's true. The Right likes the regulations and permits and piles of legal crap, and the Left really
Where's the party that will tear down the red tape and bull shit that's been building up for the past few decades??
"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007
Google Gets "Last Chance" to Settle With EU on Antitrust Abuses
May 21, 2012, 2:50 PM
FCC: Google Knowingly Used Street View Cars to Snoop on Emails, Texts
May 1, 2012, 3:16 AM
ISP Defies FBI's Gag Order, Agent's Warrantless Surveillance Demands
March 18, 2012, 1:33 PM
China Won't Relax Control of Internet
June 8, 2010, 12:00 PM
Google Offers Tool to Detail When Governments Request User Data, Removal of Content
April 21, 2010, 10:31 AM
Twitter Senior VP: "Diversity is Important, But We Can’t Lower the Bar"
November 9, 2015, 9:59 AM
CNN Resorts to Internet Censorship to Promote Clinton Over Senator Sanders
October 15, 2015, 2:47 PM
Breaking Bad: How to Crash Google's Chrome Browser With Just 8 Characters
September 23, 2015, 11:08 AM
Quick Note: Amazon UK Offers £10 Back on Any Order £50 or Over
August 3, 2015, 12:05 PM
Editorial: Reddit Allows Itself to be Hijacked as a Hate Platform For Racist Bigots
July 21, 2015, 6:32 PM
Mozilla and Facebook to Adobe: It's Time to Kill Flash
July 20, 2015, 6:30 PM
Most Popular Articles
2 NEW PlayStation 4 Models - Unveiling September 7th
August 23, 2016, 6:23 AM
iPhones May Get Curved Screens Next Year
August 24, 2016, 6:45 AM
Drones at the Airport
August 26, 2016, 5:00 AM
5 Easy Ways to Lower Blood Pressure By Monique C. Bethell, Ph.D.
August 25, 2016, 8:00 AM
Say Goodbye to Data Plans - Sprint and T-Mobile offer Unlimited Data
August 22, 2016, 6:12 AM
Latest Blog Posts
First Self-Driving Car debut on the streets of Singapore
Aug 28, 2016, 4:10 PM
Coming Soon - Drones and Airports
Aug 24, 2016, 12:40 PM
SolarCity’s Gigafactory: A Milesone in Emerging Technology by Lily Emamian - 15 August 2016
Aug 15, 2016, 6:30 AM
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information