Twitter today released its first biannual transparency report for 2015, enumerating government requests for user data. The company saw a 40 percent increase in data inquiries by governments over the second half of 2014.
Globally, the company received 2,871 requests spanning 7,144 user accounts, and released some information for 52 percent of them. Twitter notifies its users of information requests except in cases of national security.
The vast majority of these (56 percent) came from the United States. Twitter received 1,622 data requests from the US government covering 3,299 accounts over the report’s period, and provided some information for 80 percent of these.
Russia went from never having requesting data to asking over 108 times in the reporting period, whereas Turkey’s requests increased by 150 percent to 356 – Twitter did not grant any of those requests.
The report also shows an increased number of requests to remove content; these have also increased over every reporting period. Turkey was by far the most active, with 477 removal requests spanning 2,642 accounts.
Finally, the report also covers DMCA takedown notices for copyrighted information. As you might expect, these increased too over the last semester; there were 16,648 takedown notices, up from 9,199 the previous period.
Users are notified when a takedown has been requested, and are provided with instructions on how to counter the request if they believe it was made in error.
With increasing concerns over user’s data privacy, dozens of tech companies have taken to releasing transparency reports over the past couple of years. Twitter has also recently made the reports available in ten languages. To read the company’s full report, head on over here.
➤ Three years of increased #transparency … and counting [Twitter Blog]