Apple's Latest Transparency Report Shows Jump in National Security Requests

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MacRumors, Sep 28, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple this week released its latest transparency report [PDF] outlining government data requests received from January 1, 2017 to June 30, 2017.

    In the United States, Apple received 4,479 requests for 8,958 devices and provided data 80 percent of the time (in 3,565 cases). Worldwide, Apple received 30,814 requests for data from 233,052 devices and provided data 80 percent of the time (in 23,856 cases).

    Overall demands for data were slightly down compared to requests during the same time period last year, but Apple disclosed a much higher number of national security requests that include orders received under FISA and National Security Letters. According to Apple, to date, it has not received any orders for bulk data.

    Apple says it received 13,250 - 13,499 National Security Orders affecting 9,000 to 9,249 accounts. That's up from 2,750 - 2,999 orders affecting 2,000 to 2,249 accounts received during the first half of 2016.


    Though Apple attempts to be as transparent as possible in its reports, the government does not allow the company to release specific details when it comes to the number of National Security requests received, instead requiring a number range to be provided to customers. Apple uses the narrowest range permissible by law.

    Apple lately has been making more of an effort to be clearer about the type of information governments around the world have asked for, and its last two reports, this one included, have been highly detailed.

    Along with the total number of device requests and National Security Orders, Apple also provides data on a range of categories covering government requests for emergencies such as missing children, requests related to stolen devices, fraud requests, account deletion/restriction requests, civil non-government cases and account preservation requests, all of which can be viewed directly in the report.

    Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

    Article Link: Apple's Latest Transparency Report Shows Jump in National Security Requests
  2. R3k macrumors 6502a

    Sep 7, 2011
    Sep 7, 2011
  3. nt5672 macrumors 68000

    Jun 30, 2007
    Thankfully, Apple is stepping up here.

    Now lets all write congress and tell them how asinine it is for the government to prevent accurate report counts of such requests.

    Remember the government claims that there is no privacy violation tracking metadata. These counts are simply metadata. So metadata publishing is bad for government, but perfectly OK for individuals and companies. Another case of the government not looking out for its citizens.
  4. larrylaffer macrumors 6502a


    Aug 1, 2009
    Los Angeles
    But a slightly smaller percentage of those requests were fulfilled, for whatever that's worth.
  5. MH01 Suspended


    Feb 11, 2008
  6. larrylaffer macrumors 6502a


    Aug 1, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Check out the numbers for South Korea. 106 requests, but 139,134 devices.

    Busting up a stolen phone ring maybe?
  7. 69Mustang macrumors 604


    Jan 7, 2014
    In between a rock and a hard place
    That's exactly what that looks like.
  8. now i see it macrumors 68040

    Jan 2, 2002
    Bottom line: Just assume you're under investigation and use your iPhone accordingly.
  9. DoctorTech macrumors 6502


    Jan 6, 2014
    Indianapolis, IN
    I find some comfort in this statement, "According to Apple, to date, it has not received any orders for bulk data."
  10. youknome macrumors 6502a


    Nov 22, 2010
    Probably have other means without going the official route...
  11. techwhiz macrumors 6502a

    Feb 22, 2010
    Northern Ca.
  12. ferrous macrumors regular

    Aug 21, 2007
    Repoblikan'i Madagasikara
    So this is how (un)secure your data is
  13. BornAgainMac macrumors 603


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident
    Well, maybe the iPhone X will help with investigations when you have the suspect in custody.
    Edit: Actually touch ID will work just as good anyways in that situation too.
  14. dewski macrumors 6502

    Aug 20, 2011
    I hope they are liberal with that data needed for locating missing children.
  15. Lionel Messi, Sep 28, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2017

    Lionel Messi macrumors regular

    Dec 2, 2013
    Barcelona, Spain
    "Europe, Middle East, India, Africa" but not a single Middle Eastern country. Were they excluded from the report?
  16. macTW Suspended

    Oct 17, 2016
    Oh man. 13,250 to 13,449. That range is a major difference, whether it be 13,250 or 13,449 will change my view on the government.

    /s :)
  17. GrumpyMom macrumors G3


    Sep 11, 2014
    There’s a Hillary and Jared joke in here somewhere!
  18. lowendlinux Contributor


    Sep 24, 2014
    North Country (way upstate NY)
    To be fair there's a Hillary and Jared joke in just about anything.
  19. TheTruth101 Suspended

    Mar 15, 2017
    I would like to see how many of those requests are from jealousy women.
  20. Porco macrumors 68030


    Mar 28, 2005
    Another way of putting it would be less than 1 in 100,000 users. (>1 billion iOS users / <10,000 accounts affected (suspected) by requests).

    Or, twice the odds that someone could open your iPhone with a false match for TouchID (1 in 50,000 according to Apple recently).

    Worth thinking about when politicians demand more and more access to our devices in terms of proportionality.
  21. miniyou64 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 8, 2008
  22. wolfshades macrumors 6502


    Nov 1, 2007
    Toronto, Ontario Canada
    Indeed. And by vivid contrast: Apple the Good. I mean that sincerely too - they've been consistent in their efforts to protect their clients against Big Brother.
  23. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    "Device Requests make up the majority of requests that Apple receives. Most commonly they come from law enforcement agencies working on behalf of customers who have requested assistance locating lost or stolen devices."

    In some countries, a device request will happen whenever a customer wants their insurance to pay for a stolen phone. To get any money, the case has to be reported to the police, which will automatically request information from Apple in the hope to find the phone.

    Yeah, it's totally insecure if Apple tells the police that you did indeed buy the phone that you reported as stolen to your insurance company.
  24. entropys macrumors 6502a


    Jan 5, 2007
    Brisbane, Australia
    Look, just gotta find that Russian link somehow!
  25. craig1410 macrumors 65816


    Mar 22, 2007
    Or jealous/insecure men.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 28, 2017 ---

    And, no, this is a commendable effort from the largest company in the world to push back on government overreach and be as transparent to their users as the law permits.

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