After US, India Made Highest Number of User Data Requests to Google [Transparency Report]

India made the highest number of user data requests to Google after United States between January to June 2013, according to the latest Google transparency report.

In the six month period, law enforcement agencies made 2691 user data requests specifying 4161 accounts. Google complied with 64% of the requests.

The only other country which made a higher number of user data request was the United States. Over 10,000 such requests were made by the US for details on more than 20,000 user accounts.

Number of user data requests from India went up by 10% compared to the previous 6 months and more than doubled from the corresponding period in 2009. Worldwide, Google received over 25,000 user data requests which specified 42,500 accounts in the period.

Censorship & Content Removal Requests on the Rise

Indian government and law enforcement agencies got the highest number of items removed from Google in 6 months between July to December 2012. Through 122 executive and police orders, 2,529 items were removed. Over 400 items were removed through 38 court orders from India. The high number of executive orders indicates higher government censorship. The number of content removal requests we received increased by 90% compared to the previous reporting period, said the report.

Innocence of Muslims

Google also received inquiries from 20 countries regarding Innocence of Muslims, a movie that created furore in the United States and elsewhere. India was one of the countries. “We restricted videos from view in Indonesia, India, Jordan, Malaysia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Turkey. Due to difficult circumstances, we temporarily restricted videos from view in Egypt and Libya,” Google said.

North East Exodus

During the North-East exodus witnessed in India, the Computer Emergency Response Team made 5 requests to remove content from Google+, a Blogger blog, 64 YouTube videos, and 1759 comments on YouTube videos on the grounds of disrupting public order.

In response, Google removed one video for violating YouTube Community Guidelines. Google also restricted 47 Youtube Videos from local view, in addition to removing 12 YouTube comments and disabling local access to 3 Blogger blog posts that violated local laws, said the company.

Which Individual?

Google also said that it received a court order addressed to a third party to remove 247 search results for linking to websites that allegedly violated an “individual’s privacy.” It did not say who that individual was. Google also did not remove the search results.

A Cyber Crime Investigation Cell also requested Google to remove depictions of disputed borders of Jammu and Kashmir in five Google Maps domains other than maps.google.co.in. The requests were not honored.

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