Microsoft has released the company’s first Law Enforcement Requests report (2012 edition), which provides data on the number of law enforcement requests to the company regarding Microsoft’s services and how the company responded to those requests.
The Law Enforcement Requests report covers Hotmail, Outlook.com, SkyDrive, Xbox LIVE, Microsoft Account, Office 365, as well as information on Skype. The sole purpose of the request is to showcase the company’s stance on transparency.
“In recent months, there has been broadening public interest in how often law enforcement agencies request customer data from technology companies and how our industry responds to these requests. Google, Twitter and others have made important and helpful contributions to this discussion by publishing some of their data. We’ve benefited from the opportunity to learn from them and their experience, and we seek to build further on the industry’s commitment to transparency by releasing our own data today,” Microsoft stated in an official blog post.
According to the data, Microsoft received 75,378 requests from law enforcement for customer information which potentially affected 137,424 accounts. Microsoft only disclosed 1,558 requests, which is roughly 2.1% of the requests made. 99% of the 1,558 disclosures were due to a lawful warrant presented by the courts in the United States.
Microsoft has made it clear that they will only release this type of information to law enforcement with a valid subpoena to see non-content data and a court order or warrant to see customer’s content. Microsoft also tries to make sure that the information requested is within the boundaries of the law. While this is the company’s first time providing “transparency” into this type of matter, how do you feel about it?Microsoft, Security