In the 2014 Transparency Report, the Canadian telecom Rogers Communication has reported fewer customer information requests since the Supreme Court ruled that Internet Service Providers could not voluntarily disclose customer information to law enforcement officials than in previous years. In 2013, Rogers had 174,917 requests for customer information, including addresses, billing records and names, but in 2014 there were only 113,655.
This is partly due to the Canadian Supreme Court ruling that barred ISP’s, including Rogers, from disclosing names, addresses and phone numbers of their clients at the request of law enforcement officials without a warrant from a judge. This landmark decision has seen the number of requests drop significantly, but requests that had a judge warrant only dropped by roughly 3000, from 74,415 to 71, 501.
As well, Rogers confirmed that they denied access to information, or were unable to return a customers information in 2,278 cases in 2014. Whether this was due to the changes, or simply due to not keeping long term records is unknown, but this also signifies a raise in denials.
As per the ruling, the other major carriers such as Bell Communications and Telus Communications also have seen a similar drop in requests. We were unable to acquire concrete numbers from the other two of the big three, but have been told the requests for both non-warrant and warrant requests have dropped significantly.
This trend in Canada has not been repeated in other parts of the world, and this is worrying to many within the data industry.
Just south of the border, the United States has seen a sharp increase in requests to the major providers, and this has not only been limited to telecommunication companies.
For instance, in 2013 Verizon and AT&T received more than 300,000 requests from law enforcement, both federal and state, which sees little to no change. With Verizon seeing 150,000 requests in the first six months of 2014 and 140,000 requests in the last half of the year, a drop of only 10,000 between the two years. On the other side AT&T received 115,925 requests in the first half in both civil and criminal proceedings, and 147,830, and these are numbers are not the most troubling.
Multinational companies such as Microsoft and Google have been seeing a dramatic increase when it comes to requests. Google for instance has seen a 19% increase over the last year, and with the continued popularity of Google services that back up everything, this will only increase.
Although we are north of the border, here at 4GoodHosting we are proud to announce that when you utilize our services your information will not, under any circumstances be released to authorities without a warrant. We make sure that your data is safe and secure in our Canadian based data centres and continue to supply our customers with the best in class security and stability. Next time you are looking for storage options, the only place to look is at 4GoodHosting.