Yahoo publishes first transparency report, US tops snooping list

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Following in the footsteps of other tech giants, Yahoo has published its first ever transparency report revealing how often governments request data about its users. According to the information, the majority of requests came from the US.

The report presents information on global government data requests that Yahoo received between January 1 and June 30 of this year. The move comes in the wake of the NSA leak scandal, following which technology titans in the Silicon Valley fell under criticism for helping governments spy on their citizens.

“At Yahoo, we take the privacy of our users seriously. We also recognize our role as a global company in promoting freedom of expression wherever we do business,” Ron Bell, Yahoo’s General Counsel, said in a Friday statement.

The document shows that US government agencies made 12,444 data requests from Yahoo, covering 40,322 user accounts.

The company disclosed at least some user data for 92 percent of requests. In 4,604 cases, Yahoo shared information on account content data, and in 6,798 cases it disclosed non-content data. The latter includes basic subscriber details such as those provided by users during their registration with Yahoo, including their name, “location, IP-address, login details, billing information, and other transactional information.”

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According to the document, Germany is ranked second on the list, with 4,295 requests from the government. Italy placed third, with 2,637 requests.

Yahoo underlined that less than 0.01 percent of its user accounts worldwide were involved in these requests.

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