Facebook announces surge in govts’ demands for personal user data

Thursday, November 12, 2015
By Paul Martin

12 Nov, 2015

Requests for user data from governmental organizations, as well as content restrictions increased “globally” in the first half of 2015, Facebook says in its report. Half the requests came from the US – only one was made by Russia.

“The amount of content restricted for violating local law increased by 112 percent over the second half of 2014,” Facebook said in its “Global Government Requests Report,” covering January to June 2015. More than 20,500 pieces of content were restricted by the social media giant following authorities’ demands.

Over 41,000 government requests for account data were received by Facebook during the six months, it revealed, saying the number had increased by 18 percent compared to the second half of last year.

US law enforcement agencies have been the most demanding, with US agencies requesting data from 26,579 accounts. A significant amount of requests also came from the UK, Germany and France. User data requests from Russia totaled one, Facebook said.

Access to 28 content pieces in Russia have been restricted, following reports by The Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology, and Mass Media “for violating the integrity of the Russian Federation and local law, which forbids activities such as mass public riots and the promotion and sale of drugs,” Facebook said.

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