DOJ loosens gag order, Apple issues update on NSA requests

Apple updates details on government info requests following DOJ settlement

On Monday evening the U.S. Department of Justice announced it was loosening restrictions on what details tech companies can disclose about government data requests - an area that Tim Cook spoke out against as recently as this afternoon, during Apple's conference call with analysts.

Apple wasted no time: Shortly after the government announced the change, Apple posted a letter to its web site entitled Update on National Security and Law Enforcement Orders.

Apple is reporting the actual number of requests for information related to law enforcement investigations. Law enforcement requests most often relate to criminal investigations such as robbery, theft, murder, and kidnapping. In addition, Apple is re-reporting all the guidelines that allow us to report these orders separate from law enforcement orders, in bands of 250. This data represents every U.S. national security order for data about our customers regardless of geography. We did not receive any orders for bulk data. The number of accounts involved in national security orders is infinitesimal relative to the hundreds of millions of accounts registered with Apple.

In November Apple offered some details about law enforcement information requests, but made it clear that it wanted to be more forthcoming than it could be because of the law. Now that the regulations have changed, Apple's amended that information.

The updated information:

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Peter Cohen

Mac Managing Editor of iMore and weekend Apple Product Professional at a local independent Apple reseller. Follow him on Twitter @flargh

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Reader comments

DOJ loosens gag order, Apple issues update on NSA requests


What about that story about the NSA targeting Angry birds and other iphone apps that leak a lot of personal information. Surprised that isn't on here. I think with the whole NSA business, its the information that they don't make legal requests to obtain is whats really at issue right now.

Is there an article, not a forum post/self.(whatever) post you can point to that says this? Not sure what data they'd get from Angry Birds tbh, I mean, it doesn't take contacts, nor calls/texts. Maybe my Ad Identifier? That's why I have PMP on Jailbreak to generate random identifiers.