Apple has reported that the US government made 1000-2000 requests for user account info and 3542 requests for device info during first 6 month of current year. And it is not a new phenomenon. This has happened many times before.
Apple is not the first company to release Government Information Requests report. But Apple itself releases such report for the very first time. Apple states that "We believe that our customers have a right to understand how their personal information is handled, and we consider it our responsibility to provide them with the best privacy protections available." That is why Apple has come up with a report on these matters.
The main function is to let consumers know what they are up against. The report includes questionable inquiries that come from different law enforcement agencies around the world. But the number of US government requests is very high. And the Cupertino was not first allowed to issue such report. Apple has made it crystal clear that it is dead against such snooping around in other people’s business. It is clearly against the law.
Apple is currently in talks with the White House regarding this limit to freedom of information. "At the time of this report, the U.S. government does not allow Apple to disclose, except in broad ranges, the number of national security orders, the number of accounts affected by the orders, or whether content, such as emails, was disclosed. We strongly oppose this gag order, and Apple has made the case for relief from these restrictions in meetings and discussions with the White House, the U.S. Attorney General, congressional leaders, and the courts," said Apple.
This report shows number of those account requests and device requests that Apple received from law enforcement agencies between January 1, 2013, and June 30, 2013. Apple receives 1000-2000 requests from US government regarding about 2000 to 3000 user accounts. In response, Apple disclosed data of 0-1000 number of accounts. UK and Spain sent 127 and 154 user account information requests. All other countries sent very less number of requests as all are below 100.
However, iPhone maker received 3542 number of law enforcement device requests. These requests asked to breach data of 8605 number of devices. Apple provides 88% of the required data. Apple provides data on 3110 number of requests. UK, Germany and Singapore are three other major countries which sent 1028, 2156 and 1498 request respectively.
The report issued by Apple in particular says that it doesn’t have any faith in collecting personal data. This is unlike its competitor Google. Rather, the safety of individual privacy is a top priority at Apple Incorporated. What Apple wants is more honesty and straightforwardness by the government instead of secrecy. It is currently concentrating on discussing things over with the government.
Already, Yahoo and Facebook have issued reports regarding governmental requests. Now Apple has come up with its own version of a report. This feature has everything to do with the Patriot Act enacted by George W. Bush. And it all began in response to 9/11.