Brad Smith, General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs at Microsoft today blogged about transparency in handling user data on law enforcement requests and more. The also released their 2012 Law Enforcement Requests Report.
Here is the part of the summary,
· First, while we receive a significant number of law enforcement requests from around the world, very few actually result in the disclosure to these agencies of customer content. To be precise, last year Microsoft (including Skype) received 75,378 law enforcement requests for customer information, and these requests potentially affected 137,424 accounts or other identifiers. Only 2.1 percent, or 1,558 requests, resulted in the disclosure of customer content.
· It’s insightful, I believe, to look at the governments to whom customer content was disclosed. Of the 1,558 disclosures of customer content, more than 99 percent were in response to lawful warrants from courts in the United States. In fact, there were only 14 disclosures of customer content to governments outside the United States. These were to governments in Brazil, Ireland, Canada and New Zealand.
· Of the 56,388 cases where Microsoft (excluding Skype) disclosed some non-content information to law enforcement agencies, more than 66 percent of these were to agencies in only five countries. These were the U.S., the United Kingdom, Turkey, Germany and France. For Skype, the top five countries accounted for 81 percent of all requests. These countries were the U.K., U.S., Germany, France and Taiwan.
· Roughly 18 percent of the law enforcement requests (again, excluding Skype) resulted in the disclosure of no customer information in any form, either because Microsoft rejected the request or because no customer information was found. (We don’t have this information for Skype for 2012 because its data was not retained in this form, but we will for 2013 and the future.)
Microsoft also announced that they are committed to respecting human rights, free expression, and individual privacy while maintaining the compliance with legally binding requests from law enforcement, and we respect and appreciate the role that law enforcement personnel play in so many countries to protect the public’s safety.
Read more at source link below.