Obama administration will now allow US companies disclose to their customers the number of government surveillance requests received.
Internet giants, Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, Facebook and Linked-In, had earlier sued the US government in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court seeking the right to disclose surveillance data to customers. The lawsuit has been dropped though following the government’s recent decision.
“We filed our lawsuits because we believe that the public has a right to know about the volume and types of national security requests we receive,” a representative for Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and Facebook said in a statement. “While this is a very positive step, we’ll continue to encourage Congress to take additional steps to address all of the reforms we believe are needed.”
The new agreement allows companies to disclose the existence of FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) court orders in increments of 1000, but without specifics.
The agreement doesn’t involve startups less than two years old.
On Monday, technology company, Apple, updated its recent transparency report reflecting the new guidelines.