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JustHere | November 15, 2017

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Qatar’s requests for account details of users rejected by Facebook

Qatar’s requests for account details of users rejected by Facebook

Results from Facebook’s first global government requests report revealed that Qatar had made three requests for account details of three Facebook users in the first half of this year. But none were granted by the internet company, according to a report in ArabianBusiness.

The Global Government Requests Report, is the first such report released by Facebook, and covers the first six months of 2013. The report includes the following details:
·      Names of countries who requested users’ information from Facebook.
·      The number of requests made by each of those countries.
·      The number of users/user accounts specified in those requests.
·      The percentage of those requests that were accepted by Facebook, where some data were disclosed due to legal requirements.

Explaining to its users why Facebook complied with some of these government requests, Colin Stretch, Facebook General Counsel said on the website’s ‘government requests’ page:
“As we have made clear in recent weeks, we have stringent processes in place to handle all government data requests. We believe this process protects the data of the people who use our service, and requires governments to meet a very high legal bar with each individual request in order to receive any information about any of our users. We scrutinize each request for legal sufficiency under our terms and the strict letter of the law, and require a detailed description of the legal and factual bases for each request. We fight many of these requests, pushing back when we find legal deficiencies and narrowing the scope of overly broad or vague requests. When we are required to comply with a particular request, we frequently share only basic user information, such as name.
We hope this report will be useful to our users in the ongoing debate about the proper standards for government requests for user information in official investigations. And while we view this compilation as an important first report – it will not be our last. In coming reports, we hope to be able to provide even more information about the requests we receive from law enforcement authorities.”

As per the report released by Facebook, the top five countries that made the maximum requests were:

  • US: 11,000-12,000 requests for 20,000 – 21,000 users.
  • India: 3,245 requests for 4,144 users.
  • UK: 1,975 requests for 2,337 users.
  • Germany: 1,886 requests for 2,068 users.
  • Italy: 1,075 requests for 2,306 users.

Qatar and Egypt were the only two Middle Eastern countries to be featured in the report. The full list of countries can be found here.

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