Govt User Data Requests To Google Keep Increasing, Responses Keep Getting Lower
Google has now released it’s 8th update to the transparency report that they started publishing in 2010. Globaly, the requests from governments for user information have more than doubled.
In it’s first transparency report that came out in December 2009, Governments across the had made 12,539 user data requests, while in the latest report that number has more than doubled to 25,879.
While the data and user account requests are increasingly exponentially, it is interesting to note that Google is providing lesser amount of data in percentage terms. In 2010, Google provided data for 76 percent of all the requests made to them, while in the latest update for 2013, the data produced was only 65%.
Requests by India
India remained the country with 2nd highest number of requests made to Google. While US topped with 10,918 requests in Jan-June 2013 period, India made 2,691 requests during the same time.
Google furnished some data to 64 percent of requests made by India, which is in line with global average. Like it’s global counterparts, Google has been returning lesser data with each passing year. In 2010, the same percentage was much higher at 79 percent, which is now at 64 percent.
Does these transparency reports help?
While it may not help ordinary users, they definitely help in bringing transparency to consumers. Also, when Google puts such kind of data out in open, authorities do understand that they need to have a legitimate and legal reason for asking for a user data.
Also, after Google started publishing these transparency reports, other large online players like Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft and others have also joined the bandwagon.
And lastly, if not anything, users start feeling that much more safer with their data residing on their servers.
What do you think?