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FCC reminds broadband providers that they can't lie to customers

07/23, 4:40pm

Notice on Open Internet Transparency Rule tells ISPs to give accurate service information

In a public notice to Internet service providers, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reminded business that they cannot lie to consumers about the services they offer. The notice informs business and the general public that "every provider of broadband Internet access in the United States" is subject to the Open Internet Transparency Rule.

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Microsoft encrypts Outlook.com email, opens Transparency Center

07/01, 4:11pm

Outlook, OneDrive traffic gains encryption to increase security

Microsoft has announced three new ways the company will improve the security of customer data in the wake of the NSA surveillance revelations. New encryption has been added to Outlook.com, with OneDrive also receiving a similar encryption-based security boost, and the company is also introducing its first "Microsoft Transparency Center" on its Redmond campus, in order to help governments understand and trust the security of the company's software.

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US government issues first transparency report for FISA, NSL requests

06/27, 4:47pm

Director of National Intelligence report reveals number of surveillance requests in 2013

The Director of National Intelligence (DNI) has released a report, revealing a number of insights into the activities of the National Security Agency (NSA). The report, posted on Tumblr, comes as part of a DNI directive from August 2013, itself prompted by President Obama in June of the same year, with the report listing how many information requests and surveillance-related activities have been performed by the US government in the entirety of last year.

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Wikipedia updates Terms of Use, requires paid edit disclosures

06/16, 3:21pm

Editors of Wikipedia must reveal if they are being paid for site changes

Wikipedia is attempting to improve the transparency and overall accuracy of the online encyclopedia, by taking a stance against companies paying for edits. A change to the Terms of Use now requires for any contributors on the site to disclose if any company or organization compensates them for editing existing or creating new posts, as such posts could introduce bias to materials offered to visitors.

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Vodafone confirms some governments wiretap customers without warrants

06/06, 7:58am

Law enforcement disclosure report claims phone tapping widely used on various Vodafone networks

The world's second-largest carrier has revealed its service is being monitored by government agencies. Following the lead of other technology companies in publishing a transparency report, Vodafone claims phone tapping is being widely used by agencies in a number of the 29 countries it operates in, and in some cases, authorities are able to access customer data without even requiring a warrant.

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Comcast will start testing e-mail encryption in coming weeks

06/05, 7:44am

Google transparency report for e-mail encryption prompts Comcast to improve

Comcast is preparing to start encrypting customer e-mails, after a Google transparency report noted a lack of protection on e-mails from its domain. The company claims it is will soon start testing encryption on outbound customer e-mails, advising to the Wall Street Journal that it will take place "within a matter of weeks," and it is "very aggressive about this."

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Google issues transparency report, bolsters Chrome email encryption

06/03, 6:23pm

Reports on inbound, outbound Gmail encryption, Chrome end-to-end extension

Today, Google issued one of its transparency reports, focusing on the encryption of outbound and inbound emails to other domains. Figures in the report look at different areas in the world, giving a percentage to the coverage amounts domains offer when dealing with messages from Gmail. Even though many domains may not need additional encryption, Google has announced a new Chrome extension for end-to-end web-based email, to give consumers more options.

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Facebook issues second transparency report, adds censorship requests

04/11, 4:21pm

US continues to ask for most user data, India most censorious

Facebook has updated its global government transparency report for the second time, covering the second half of 2013. Aside from revealing that it had 28147 requests for user data from 81 countries, up from between 25,607 and 26,607 requests from 71 countries in the previous report, Facebook is also revealing which countries are restricting or removing content from view.

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Google transparency report shows 120-percent increase in data requests

03/27, 4:05pm

US tops list of countries requesting user data from Google

Requests for user information received by Google from government agencies have increased 120 percent since 2009, according to the search company's latest transparency report. The quantity of requests in the second half of 2013 reached an all-time high of 27,477, up from 25,879 for the first half of the year, while the percentage of requests where some data is provided has reached its lowest point since the report began, with 64 percent.

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Time Warner Cable issues first Transparency report covering 2013

03/22, 9:51pm

Transparency report from TWC offers graphs instead of figures

Following in the footsteps of many other technology companies, including Verizon and Comcast, Time Warner Cable is issuing its first ever transparency report to the public. The report gives an indication as to the amount of requests by law enforcement for subscriber data and messaging information, covering the entirety of the year 2013.

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Comcast report claims over 24,000 government data requests in 2013

03/21, 10:12am

First Comcast transparency report details government requests for customer data

Comcast received a total of 24,698 requests for customer data from law enforcement officials in 2013, the company has revealed in its first transparency report. The telecommunications provider is joining a number of other technology companies, including competitor Verizon, in providing summary figures to reveal how much data the US government is requesting about its subscribers.

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Greenpeace reverses course, holds Apple as model of responsibility

02/13, 6:54pm

Praises company's transparency, supplier responsibility, environmental record

In what could be seen as an about-face in its often-combative relationship with Apple, Greenpeace has reacted to the company's latest Supplier Responsibility report, praising the iPhone maker' push to reduce the use of "conflict minerals" and specifically complimenting the CEO, saying Apple's increased transparency regarding its suppliers "is becoming a hallmark of Tim Cook's leadership at the company."

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Twitter attacks US over FISA reporting, publishes transparency report

02/06, 2:53pm

Twitter complains over lack of detail when reporting FISA requests

Twitter has published its latest Transparency Report, detailing information requests and takedown notices, while at the same time taking the opportunity to attack the US government over its lack of transparency on national security requests. While Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Yahoo, and LinkedIn provided limited details about Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) requests, Twitter has opted not to, due to its current lack of usefulness.

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Verizon transparency report shows 320K data requests, 1.5K phone taps

01/22, 12:58pm

Carrier receives over 1K national security letters

Amid increased scrutiny over privacy regulations, Verizon has released its first transparency report detailing the number and type of government requests for customer data. The carrier was asked to respond to over 320,000 requests from federal, state or local law-enforcement agencies in the US during 2013. Notably, nearly 1,500 of the requests resulted in wiretaps and between 1,000 and 2,000 National Security Letters were included in the numbers.

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Google criticizes FISA gag order in latest Transparency Report

11/14, 9:37am

Requests up by more than 100 percent since 2010

Google has released its latest Transparency Report, detailing government requests for user data during the first half of the year. Such requests have more than doubled since Google released its first report in July 2009, totaling 25,879 for the six-month period, though the company notes that "these numbers only include the requests we're allowed to publish."

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Google petitions FISC for greater transparency [U]

09/09, 11:58am

Search giant criticizes secretive policies

(Updated with details on Facebook, Yahoo, Microsoft) Google has submitted an amended petition with the US Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, again calling for greater transparency over data requests. The company argues that it has suffered a damaged reputation due to FISA secrecy rules, which prohibit the company from disclosing even broad statistics regarding the number of FISA requests that it has responded to.

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Yahoo issues first transparency report, blasts US government

09/06, 1:58pm

Company highlights its FISA challenge

Yahoo has published its first global transparency report, outlining raw statistics surrounding government requests for user data in the first half of the year. In an accompanying blog post, Yahoo general counsel Ron Bell criticized the US government and highlighted the company's two-year legal challenge against the 2008 amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).

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Facebook transparency report shows US government makes most requests

08/27, 2:13pm

US asks for most user data, followed by India, UK, Italy, Germany

Government agencies representing 74 countries requested details from 38,000 Facebook accounts in the first half of the year, the social network has revealed. Its first Global Government Requests Report, similar to transparency reports published by Microsoft and Google, shows the governments of the United States, India, the United Kingdom, Italy, and Germany as making the largest numbers of requests for user data from Facebook for the period.

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Microsoft publishes first Law Enforcement Requests Report

03/21, 1:58pm

United States, United Kingdom performs most requests

Microsoft has published its first Law Enforcement Requests Report, showing how many requests for customer data it received from various security agencies around the world. The effort by Microsoft for transparency, part of its Global Human Rights Statement, mirrors a similar effort by Google and its Transparency Report, with both attempting to demonstrate which governments want to affect the Internet and its users the most.

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Briefly: Surface update, Dropbox 100M, Google takedowns

11/13, 5:34pm

Microsoft issues software update for Surface RT

Microsoft has issued a software update for its Surface RT device, the first for the device since it launched last month. The update is said to improve app launch times and to patch a number of known security issues with Windows RT. It does not apparently, though, address an audio stuttering issue that has been pointed out on the device.

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