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Facebook data requests by the Indian Govt consistently on the rise

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Facebook's Transparency Report for the first half (H1) of 2018 reveals a steep rise in data requests by the Indian government, as compared to the number in the previous two years. Facebook received 16,580 data requests from the government in H1 of 2018, as compared to 12,171 data requests in H2 2017 and 9,853 data requests in H1 of 2017. During this period, 23,047 user account information was also requested. Facebook provided data to the government in 53% of the cases - this includes information about requests related to various products and services under Facebook such as Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, Oculus and WhatsApp. The following table shows a rise in the data requests made by the government over the years.   Legal and Emergency requests It is interesting to note that the half yearly report saw an increase of 107.7% in the emergency requests from the government as compared to the requests made in H2 2017. Legal requests rose by 34.43%. Legal requests are the requests accompanied by legal process while emergency disclosure requests are the ones where law enforcement may submit requests without legal process.   Facebook said that it responded to government requests for data in accordance with applicable laws and its terms of service. "Each and every request we receive is carefully reviewed for legal sufficiency and we may reject or require greater specificity on requests that appear overly broad or vague," it said. Facebook said that it accepted government requests to preserve account information pending the receipt of formal legal process. "When…

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