If one silver lining exists from all of the news surrounding the U.S. government’s increasingly invasive data requests from communications companies, it’s the new trend of transparency reports.
Following Verizon’s report last month, AT&T published its first transparency report today, which details more than 300,000 requests for customer data from government agencies last year.
Verizon, in comparison, said that it received around 320,000 data requests from the government.
AT&T notes that while its report contains data from most of 2013, it has a few instances where the government only permits it to offer up details from requests made in the first six months of 2013. In this case, it looks like AT&T is only able to report Foreign Intelligence Survey Requests from the first half of last year (which affected between 35,000 and 35,999 accounts).
“Like all companies, we must provide information to government and law enforcement agencies to comply with court orders, subpoenas, lawful discovery requests and other legal requirements,” AT&T wrote in the report. “We ensure that these requests are valid and that our responses comply with the law and our own policies.”
Among other data points, AT&T says it received between 2,000 and 2,999 National Security Letters in 2013; 37,839 requests for location information; and 94,303 emergency requests, which are high-priority requests from law enforcement related to 911-related inquiries.
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