Image via Wiki

Image via Wiki

The Washington Post reports that Apple is one of several tech companies planning change the way it handles government requests for customer information in the near future. According to the Post, Apple will begin notifying any customer whose information is requested by law enforcement later this month.

Microsoft, Facebook, and Google are also adjusting their own policies accordingly. The companies say that users have a right to know when their data is being turned over to officials. The government, on the other hand, argues that this could give criminals under investigation a chance to fight back, cover their tracks, and avoid being caught.

This move could end up causing quite a bit of trouble for these companies, as law enforcement typically tries to prohibit any attempts to alert the target of an investigation. These agencies will no doubt attempt to find loopholes that they can exploit to stop companies from carrying out these new policies.

To that end, it’s important to note that not every type of information request will trigger these notifications. Certain federal agencies, such as the FBI, engaging in national security investigations can issue legally-binding gag orders that will prevent the companies from informing the subject of the disclosure.

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11 Responses to “Apple to begin notifying customers of law enforcement requests for personal information”

  1. Tallest Skil says:

    Good for Apple. Aside from not allowing government access at all, this is the best we could hope for.

    >>The government, on the other hand, argues that this could give criminals under investigation a chance to fight back, cover their tracks, and avoid being caught.

    Criminals. A word which here may mean “law abiding citizens with contrary beliefs”.

  2. Right to know your accuser.

  3. smigit says:

    >> “The government, on the other hand, argues that this could give criminals under investigation a chance to fight back, cover their tracks, and avoid being caught”

    >> “it’s important to note that not every type of information request will trigger these notifications. Certain federal agencies, such as the FBI, engaging in national security investigations can issue legally-binding gag orders ”

    So what’s the issue? The organisations that really need access to data without informing the end user have a means to do so. It sounds like other government departments are just having a whinge since they’ll need to now ask permission to get a gag order or can’t invade on peoples privacy whenever and however they please. Personally I think it’s great move by Apple and the other companies involved.

  4. Winski says:

    OUTSTANDING !!!

  5. drtyrell969 says:

    ROFL, good thing the government never asks. They simply raid and take all.

  6. vkd108 says:

    If someone thinks tech companies will preempt government policy they are severely mistaken. This so-called “news” is simply a bluff to create a sense of security, of wellbeing, of protection, of alliance between the citizen and the supportive tech companies, as if the citizen and the tech companies are on the same side of the battle. Unfortunately they are not. The tech companies are on the side of the government. They may create a public illusion (like this one, for example) that they are on the side of the citizen but it is nothing more than that; hollow, empty, illusory words. The tech companies are at the beck and call of the government and cannot afford to be otherwise. If they were to factually step out of line, they would soon know about it, one way or the other. Actually they are willing participants in helping roll out the all-seeing eye of the government, amongst other things, in the captivation of the duped citizen with all things techie.

  7. Marklewood at Serenity Lodge says:

    Something about the structure of this confuses me. Is everyone for whom a request is made for information about a consumer considered to be a “criminal” before the fact? What ever happened to “innocent until proven guilty”? Things are so twisted today that we are now all assumed to be criminals and therefore privacy is of no concern to the government or companies? I’d say the World is insane, indeed.

  8. Jab King says:

    This is a good move by apple and the other companies since big brother wants to know when you and how you go about your daily life rather it’s criminal or non-criminal. And since many states has said that it is legal to record police officers doing there duties in public we have the right to know when our info is being shared with any type of law enforcement rather its city,county,state, & federal. If not then this is clearly a violation of the IV Amendment.

    Amendment IV
    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    it all boils down to this would you want someone to go through your personal info and your hidden dark secrets that only your family or friends might know or would you rather to have law enforcement calling your family and your grandmother and lying and worrying them just because they can. cause your info has been shared with law enforcement.