Trust is the foundation of our relationship with hundreds of millions of people and businesses around the world. Like most online services, we sometimes receive requests from governments seeking information about our users. We’ve been committed to being transparent about all requests that seek information about our users since 2012, and today we’re sharing details of the government data requests we received in the second half of 2015.
Our biannual transparency report shows how often we receive and respond to requests for user information from law enforcement. We handle all requests according to our data request principles, resisting blanket requests and giving notice to users whenever we can. We also fight to reform laws to make them more protective of your privacy—here’s our letter to the House of Representatives pushing for passage of a bill to protect users’ data in the Cloud, and here’s our letter of support to the Senate Judiciary for the same legislation. We also recently joined with other tech companies in opposing efforts by the government to force companies to undermine their own security protections.
To shed light on the source of the requests we receive, we’ve added a state-by-state breakdown of United States government requests in this report. From July to December 2015, we received 574 total requests for user information from governments around the globe, and 0–249 national security requests from the US government. Although we continue to see an increase in requests from US law enforcement, the numbers remain small compared to our user base of over half a billion users.
We value the confidence you’ve put in us and take the responsibility of protecting your information seriously. Our principles will continue to govern how we respond to all government requests for user information and how we work to earn your trust.
To see the full report click here.