The Electronic Frontier Foundation today released the latest edition of its “Who Has Your Back?” report that examines how major tech companies handle government requests for data, and a number of major tech giants scored remarkably well.
It’s the first of these reports to be released after disclosures about the NSA’s surveillance activities, and it’s clear that the tech industry’s response to leaks from Edward Snowden has played a major role in the landscape of this year’s report. Prior to this year, few companies earned a full six out of six stars for their practices, while this year’s survey showed nine companies earning top marks.
Microsoft was one of the companies that earned the maximum score possible, thanks to its aggressive advocacy for users’ privacy rights in the courts and its clear and public policies on how it handles data requests. It’s joined by Apple, Credo Mobile, Dropbox, Facebook, Google, Sonic.net, Twitter and Yahoo.
Here are Microsoft’s results:
Amazon was left out of the six-star club, in part because the company hasn’t publicly published a transparency report or its guidelines for law enforcement. In addition, the company does not promise to tell users if there is a demand for their data, though it does require that any request for data come with a warrant.
Major ISPs didn’t fare that well in the survey, with AT&T earning two stars, and Comcast earning three. Snapchat was the only company to earn one star on this year’s report, because although it publishes guidelines for law enforcement, it does not require a warrant for content, it won’t promise to tell users about government data requests, and it doesn’t publish any transparency reports.
Here’s the full infographic that shows how all the tech companies surveyed stack up.