Dropbox has revealed just how many times the government asked it for information since January by publishing its first ever six month transparency report
The report showed that 268 law enforcement requests “for user information” were made and between 0 and 249 national security requests were submitted between January and the end of June 2014.
“All the requests we receive seriously and scrutinise them to make sure they satisfy legal requirements before complying. We also push back in cases where agencies are seeking too much information or haven’t followed the proper procedures,” Dropbox said.
Dropbox had to notify its users in 91 cases when search warrant requests, court orders and subpoenas were submitted, and the firm thinks the number is “small” considering its “300 million users”.
Further to this it reported that law enforcement agencies regularly include clauses in requests that ask Dropbox to keep everything secret, even though they have no legal recourse to do so. This was present in 80 per cent of all subpoenas and it pushed back in cases where agencies wanted gagging orders that weren’t legal.
Dropbox has been on the end of stinging criticism from users so far this year that stems from a number of decisions including the changing of terms & conditions in February and the appointment of Condoleezza Rice as a director in April.
The T&Cs were changed in order to help the company better settle legal disputes whereas Rice’s appointment to the board has been done to try and strengthen its position in a number of emerging countries.
Users unhappy with Rice’s appointment went as far as starting up a website outlining why she wasn’t a good fit considering the Bush administration’s torture programme and her support of warrantless wiretaps.
A number of other companies are also committed to providing transparency reports every six months including Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Microsoft and LinkedIn and all decided to do so in the wake of National Security Agency spying revelations.Porthole Ad