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Submission + - Google Asks Government for More Visible National Security Requests (

Nerval's Lobster writes: In an open letter addressed to U.S. attorney general Eric Holder and FBI director Robert Mueller, Google chief legal officer David Drummond again insisted that reports of his company freely offering user data to the NSA and other agencies were untrue. “However,” he wrote, “government nondisclosure obligations regarding the number of FISA national security requests that Google receives, as well as the number of accounts covered by those requests, fuel that speculation.” In light of that, Drummond had a request of the two men: “We therefore ask you to help make it possible for Google to publish in our Transparency Report aggregate numbers of national security requests, including FISA disclosures—in terms of both the number we receive and their scope.” Apparently Google’s numbers would show “that our compliance with these requests falls far short of the claims being made.” Google, Drummond added, “has nothing to hide.” As part of its regularly updated Transparency Report, Google posts information about the National Security Letters (NSLs) it receives from the federal government; however, the government requires Google to report NSLs as a numerical range rather than an exact number. But even if Google does end up displaying more information about government requests, it doesn’t seem as if many Americans are dismayed about their privacy being invaded: according to a new survey by the Pew Research Center and The Washington Post (conducted after the Snowden story broke), concerns about terrorist threats outweigh the need for privacy. “Currently 62 [percent] say it is more important for the federal government to investigate possible terrorist threats, even if that intrudes on personal privacy,” read the survey’s summary. “Just 34 [percent] say it is more important for the government not to intrude on personal privacy, even if that limits its ability to investigate possible terrorist threats.”
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Google Asks Government for More Visible National Security Requests

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