And it turns out, it’s much, much worse than we thought.
After spending months in court and throwing the entire might of their massive legal team behind themselves, Google has finally appealed to a circuit court and successfully removed the gag order placed on them back in June. The US government was adamant in attempting to keep the internet search mogul silenced, and once you read the results of their testimony — it’s no wonder why.
According to documents released at the hearing, Google has received just under 11,000 requests for its users personal data just this year, representing a whopping 100 percent increase since 2010.
When asked why it took so long to get this information out to the public, Google pulled no punches in pointing the finger and reminding us who’s really to blame in this increasingly desperate situation.
“Over the past three years, we’ve continued to add more details to the report, and we’re doing so again today. We’re including additional information about legal process for U.S. criminal requests: breaking out emergency disclosures, wiretap orders, pen register orders and other court orders. We want to go even further. We believe it’s your right to know what kinds of requests and how many each government is making of us and other companies.”
And yet, even though these numbers are staggering on the surface, then don’t even represent the entirety of the requests Google received. Any details released under FISA (the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act), are still being squelched in the interest of “national security”, however with the damning evidence continuing to stack up, it’s likely this is just more of the American agencies trying to cover their tracks.
To prevent Google from keeping tabs on your activity, using a VPN provider to randomize your IP address and stay one step ahead of the spooks.