Apple gets high praise for how transparent it is with its polices on data requests from government agencies.
Apple has received some high marks from the Electronic Frontier Foundation. The non-profit watchdog group has praised the company for its transparent policies regarding how it handles data requests from government agencies. According to their report, titled, Who Has Your Back? 2015: Protecting Your Data From Government Requests, Apple received five out of five stars.
The EFF stated:
This is Apple's fifth year in the report, and it has adopted every best practice we've identified as part of this report. We commend Apple for its strong stance regarding user rights, transparency, and privacy.
Among its other policies, Apple requires that law enforcement agencies get "a search warrant that is issued upon a probable cause" for any data requests. It also publishes information about its data retention policies, and reveals the number of times governments ask Apple to remove content. Apple says that it opposes putting in "back doors" in any of its products or services for use by government agencies and adds that it never has, and never will, put in those kinds of systems.
Apple's rival, Google, scored just three stars:
This is Google's fifth year in the report, and it has adopted some of the policies we are highlighting, including the best practices from prior reports. Nonetheless, there is room for improvement. Google should take a stronger position in providing notice to users about government data requests after an emergency has ended or a gag has been lifted. Furthermore, Google should provide transparency into its data retention policies.
Facebook, perhaps surprisingly to some, scored four:
This is Facebook's fifth year in the report, and it has adopted most of the practices we've identified as part of this report. While we commend the steps it has taken to stand by its users, there is more to be done. Facebook should disclose when it blocks content or closes accounts in response to government requests.
Dropbox, which is popular with a lot of Apple users, scored five:
This is Dropbox's fourth year in the report, and it has adopted every best practice we've identified as part of this report. We commend Dropbox for its strong stance regarding user rights, transparency, and privacy.
You can see the full report via the link below. Check it out and let us know — how important is it for you that Apple scored well on this report?