U.S. top country seeking users’ info from Facebook, Twitter


Global stats pertaining to information sought by the governments about the users of social networking sites Facebook and Twitter for investigation of criminal cases shows that United States leads all the other countries in this regard.

According to Facebook Government Requests Report the United States government had filed 19,235 requests to the social media giant between July 2015 to December 2015 while it had filed 2,673 legal requests to microblogging giant, Twitter, during the same period.

Facebook had received a total of 46,710 such requests from different countries across the world with 41 percent from the U.S. government alone. Twitter had received a total 5,560 legal requests from different governments with U.S. alone filing some 48 percent of the requests.


Pakistan and India

Pakistan had filed only 471 requests (only 1 percent of total requests) with Facebook while with Twitter had filed only one such request during this period. On the other hand, India had filed 5,561 requests (almost 12 percent of total requests) with Facebook and 141 such legal requests with Twitter.



Facebook: “As part of official investigations, government officials sometimes request data about people who use Facebook. The vast majority of these requests relate to criminal cases, such as robberies or kidnappings. In many of these cases, the government is requesting basic subscriber information, such as name and length of service. Requests may also ask for IP address logs or account content.”

Twitter: It receives legal requests for account information typically “in connection with criminal investigations.” France was the second largest requester for Twitter with almost 13 percent such legal requests. “This increase of over 400% from the last reporting period is likely attributable to the string of terror attacks in France during 2015, particularly the November Paris attacks.”

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