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Microsoft receives 37,196 user data requests from law enforcement during first half of 2013

Microsoft

Microsoft has released the company’s second Law Enforcement Requests report (2013 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.

For the first six months of 2013, Microsoft has received 37,196 requests from law enforcement agencies affecting 66,539 accounts in the first six months of this year, covering January to June 2013. However, only a small number of those requests resulted in the disclosure of customer data.

“Only a small number of requests result in the disclosure of customer content data, just 2.19 percent of total requests. 92 percent of the requests that resulted in the disclosure of customer content were from United States law enforcement agencies. This is again, broadly in line with what we saw in 2012,” Microsoft explained.

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. 

“We believe this data is valuable and useful to the community that is looking to better understand these issues. However we recognize that this report—focused on law enforcement and excluding national security—only paints part of the picture. Microsoft remains committed to respecting human rights, free expression, and individual privacy,” Microsoft adds.

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