An alliance has been formed of some of the United States largest companies, including Apple, that is calling for more transparency from the NSA and its surveillance efforts. The group which also includes Google, Microsoft, Twitter and Facebook, will be publishing a letter sometime today calling for Internet, telephone and web-based service providers to report national security related requests with greater specificity. From AllthingsD:
Specifically, they ask that they are allowed to regularly report:
The number of government requests for information about their users
The number of individuals, accounts, or devices for which information was requested
The number of requests that sought communications content, basic subscriber information, and/or other information.
They also managed to obtain a copy of the letter, which makes for interesting reading. This is certainly one of the hot topics of the moment, and while we can't expect these companies in the alliance to ever disclose to the public who information is requested on, perhaps, one day, a broader view of just how much of this sort of thing goes on might be possible. We can hope.