360° Coverage : Gov't, Internet companies reach deal on disclosure

2 Updates

Gov't, Internet companies reach deal on disclosure

Jan 27 2014, 10:54pm CST | by

US reaches deal with Internet companies on requests to reveal demands for customer information WASHINGTON (AP) — The government and leading Internet companies on Monday announced a...

Filed under: news

 
 
 

33 weeks ago

Gov't, Internet companies reach deal on disclosure

Jan 27 2014, 10:54pm CST | by

US reaches deal with Internet companies on requests to reveal demands for customer information

WASHINGTON (AP) — The government and leading Internet companies on Monday announced a compromise that will allow those companies to reveal more information about how often they are ordered to turn over customer information to the government in national security investigations.

The Justice Department reached agreements with Google Inc., Microsoft Corp., Yahoo Inc., Facebook Inc. and LinkedIn Corp. that would resolve those companies' legal challenges before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The companies had asked judges to allow them allow them to disclose data on national security orders the companies have received under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

The delivery of customer information to the government from Internet companies has been under examination in the United States following leaks about National Security Agency surveillance by former NSA systems analyst Edward Snowden.

Some of those companies were among several U.S. Internet businesses identified as giving the NSA access to customer data under the program known as PRISM. But the companies had said they wanted to make the disclosures in order to correct inaccuracies in news reports and to calm public speculation about the scope of the companies' cooperation with the government. The providers wanted to show that only a tiny fraction of their customers' accounts have been subject to legal orders.

The government had opposed those requests, but reached a deal with the companies late last week that would give customers a better idea of how much information is being collected.

"Permitting disclosure of this aggregate data addresses an important area of concern to communications providers and the public," Attorney General Eric Holder and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said in a joint statement.

The five companies welcomed the deal, but said more needs to be done. "We filed our lawsuits because we believe that the public has a right to know about the volume and types of national security requests we receive," the companies said in a joint statement. "While this is a very positive step, we'll continue to encourage Congress to take additional steps to address all of the reforms we believe are needed."

Apple also released a statement. "We believe strongly that our customers have the right to understand how their personal information is being handled, and we are pleased the government has developed new rules that allow us to more accurately report law enforcement orders and national security orders in the U.S.," the company said on its website.

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., called it a "positive first step." ''Though there is still a great deal of work to do, today's announcement is good for American companies and the Americans they employ and serve," he said.

Following the Snowden leaks, the FBI allowed communications providers to report in a limited way the number of orders for data they received from the government and the number of accounts affected by such orders. However, the FBI only agreed to disclosure of a single, aggregate number of criminal and national security-related orders to the companies from all U.S. governmental entities, plus local and state entities.

Under the compromise announced Monday, Internet companies will be able to release more information, but still only in very general terms when it comes to national security investigations. They can report the number of criminal-related orders from the government. They also will be able to release, rounded to the nearest thousand, the number of secret national security-related orders from government investigators; the number of national security-related orders from the FISA court, and the number of customers affected by both. In the FISA orders, the companies will be able to say the number of requests for personal information about their customers versus their actual e-mails.

The companies can also choose a simplified reporting process that allows them to report the number of criminal-related orders, and then national security or intelligence orders in increments of 250 and the total number of customers targeted, also in groups of 250.

"These new reporting methods enable communications providers to make public more information than ever before about the orders that they have received to provide data to the government," Deputy Attorney General James M. Cole said in a letter to the five Internet companies.

The companies will have to delay releasing the number of national security orders by six months. They also had to promise that if they come up with new technology or new forms of communication, they are not able to reveal that the government can tap into that new technology for two years.

The American Civil Liberties Union, which filed a brief supporting the tech firms in their bid to disclose more information, said Monday that the deal "partially" lifted an information gag on the companies. But the group praised the agreement as "a victory for transparency."

Alex Abdo, a lawyer with the ACLU's National Security Project, said: "It is commendable that the companies pressed the government for more openness, but even more is needed. Congress should require the government to publish basic information about the full extent of its surveillance."

___

Associated Press writer Stephen Braun in Washington, AP National Writer Martha Mendoza in San Jose, Calif., and AP Technology Writer Barbara Ortutay in New York contributed to this report.

___

Follow Jesse J. Holland on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/jessejholland .

Source: AP Business

 
Update
2

2 weeks ago

Khazanah throws MAS RM6b lifeline

Aug 29 2014 5:01pm CDT | Source: Business Times Singapore

August 30, 2014 1:15 AMKHAZANAH Nasional will inject RM6 billion (SS$2.4 billion) over three years to resuscitate loss-making Malaysia Airlines (MAS) under a recovery plan that includes even an Act of Parliament. Other key moves are migrating its operations, assets and liabilities to a new company (NewCo) and slashing the workforce o ...
Source: Business Times Singapore   Full article at: Business Times Singapore
 

 
Update
1

2 weeks ago

MAS posts loss of RM307m for Q2

Aug 28 2014 5:00pm CDT | Source: Business Times Singapore

August 29, 2014 1:13 AMMALAYSIA Airlines (MAS) registered a loss of RM307 million (S$122 million) for the second quarter to end-June, but warned of worse to come in the second half when the "full financial impact of the double tragedies of MH370 and MH17 ...
Source: Business Times Singapore   Full article at: Business Times Singapore
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/31" rel="author">Associated Press</a>
The Associated Press (AP) is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

US media sees much at stake in Xi's India visit
Washington, Sep 18 (IANS) As the US reiterated that it wanted India to have friendly relations with China, the US media suggested that there was much at stake in Chinese President Xi Jinping's ongoing visit to India.
 
 
NASA spacecraft to reach Mars this weekend
Washington, Sep 18 (IANS) US space agency NASA said Wednesday its Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft will enter orbit around the Red Planet this weekend.
 
 
Russia's Gazprom to sign gas supply contract with China
Moscow, Sep 18 (IANS) Russian energy giant Gazprom have planned to sign a 30-year gas supply contract with China via the western route, the company's CEO Alexei Miller said Wednesday.
 
 
East African countries vow to preven Ebola
Nairobi, Sep 18 (IANS) Ministers of health, transport and immigration from five eastern African countries Wednesday vowed to strengthen measures that would prevent spread of Ebola virus in the region.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Justin Long coped with TV host's antics despite surgery
Los Angeles, Sep 18 (IANS) Actor Justin Long, who underwent hernia surgery last week, cooperated with Andy Cohen's antics on his show. Soon after the surgery, Long appeared on Cohen's late night show "Watch What...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
No truth in Anushka's marriage rumours
Chennai, Sep 18 (IANS) Refuting rumours that southern actress Anushka Shetty is getting hitched after she finishes working on S.S Rajamouli's Telugu magnum opus "Baahubali", her manager said that there was "no truth"...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Australian police raid terror suspects
Sydney, Sep 18 (IANS) Australian police and the nation's spy agency launched raids in homes in Sydney and Brisbane Thursday. More than 600 officers from multiple police departments swooped on homes in the early hours...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Ben Affleck admits to counting cards
Ben Affleck admits he was caught counting cards in Las Vegas in April. The 'Argo' star, who has three children, Violet, eight, Seraphina, five, and two-year-old Samuel, with wife Jennifer Garner, says he has been...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Iggy Azalea is suing her ex-boyfriend
Iggy Azalea is suing her ex-boyfriend, who claims to have a sex tape featuring the star. The Australian rapper has filed a lawsuit against Hefe Wine, accusing him of illegally downloading the entire contents of her...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
George Clooney to toast marriage with tequila
George Clooney plans to toast his upcoming nuptials with his own tequila. The 53-year-old actor's close friend and rumored best man Rande Gerber, who is married to supermodel Cindy Crawford, was spotted loading 100...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Beyonce, Jay Z working on new album?
Los Angeles, Sep 18 (IANS) Singer Beyoncé Knowles and her estranged husband-rapper Jay Z are reportedly teaming up to create a special album together. Karli Henriquez, vice president of Pop Programming at Dash Radio,...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Mendes, Gosling cried after baby's birth
Los Angeles, Sep 18 (IANS) Actors Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling got so emotional after the birth of their daughter that they burst into tears. The couple, who have been dating since September 2011, reportedly overcame...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
House okay's Obama's plan to train, equip Syrian rebels
Washington, Sep 18 (IANS) The US House of Representatives Wednesday approved President Barack Obama's plan to train and equip Syrian rebels as part of efforts to fight the Islamic State militant group. The chamber...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Pro-Britain, independence supporters put final efforts
Edinburgh, Sep 18 (IANS) Both sides in the Scottish referendum campaign have held rallies Wednesday as they make their final efforts to win over undecided voters, BBC reported. Independence supporters attended a mass...
Read more on Politics Balla