Dropbox has announced that in the first half of 2013, their company processed “less than 249” information requests on its users in total, tying in dead last (or first, depending on your perspective on the matter) with LinkedIn for the number received in between January and June of last year.
Unfortunately, like every other tech company still operating on U.S soil, they were still on strict orders not to get any more specific than that, and couldn’t come within a mile of disclosing any details about who was being looked at, what files were exposed, or the number of accounts affected by the search and seizure of less than 249 private citizen’s information.
And while the above board stuff like PRISM is all well and good, it’s what the government isn’t doing in plain view of the companies they’re cooperating with that makes it seen okay to say something like “PRISM is all well and good” by comparison.
“…It doesn’t go far enough, especially for services that receive only a handful of requests or none at all. We believe the public has a right to know the actual number of requests received and accounts affected, and we’ll continue to push to be able to provide this information.”
When the Snowden leaks first broke, companies like Verizon, Microsoft, and Yahoo defended themselves with excuses that they were acting under the requirements of the law. Then, just one month later, MUSCULAR hit the scene, and engineers at Google were heard audibly telling the NSA to “f*** off“, echoing the sentiment felt by everyone else who was equally as shocked and appalled at the amount of data the operation had been pulling down on any given day.
Grimly, for Dropbox to come out and say they are proud of the how many requests they received is basically meaningless as long the NSA is simply pulling up all the data that goes in and out of their servers straight off the lines leading into their offices. They may be ecstatic to find themselves on the low end of the list we recently posted ranking tech companies under the PRISM program, but G-men could potentially be accessing their customers info as easily as anyone else merely because of the popularity Dropbox has drawn in over the past few years.
Whatever the actual cache of data on Dropbox looks like on the computers at the NSA, we may never know, but it’s good to see there are technology firms out there willing to take a stance on this issue and stand up for what they believe is right in our new war for privacy in 2014.