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Twitter Stands With Apple, Releases Transparency Report

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- A day after Twitter chief executive officer Jack Dorsey expressed support for Apple decision not to help the FBI unlock the iPhone of the San Bernardino shooter, Twitter has released its transparency report.

The report shows a large increase in the number of content removal requests the company receives from governments, law enforcement, and other authorized organizations, copies of which Twitter publishes on Lumen for public review.

The latest report, which includes data from the last six months of 2015 includes the number of requests for account information and requests for removal of content received by Twitter from governments around the world, as well as the percentage of requests that Twitter complied with in some manner.

Twitter officials said that their company has seen a 27 percent increase in requests for account information since their last report.

The company states that the continued rise in government requests for account information may be due, in part, to global events such as elections, natural disasters, and terror attacks.

In the second half of 2015, government authorities in the U.S. made 101 requests for removal of content, 3 of which came in the form of court orders, up from none in the first half of 2015, according to the company reports.

Twitter said that despite the U.S. government and law enforcement requests, it chose not to remove any tweets.

Meanwhile, Turkish and Russian government authorities each made over 1,700 requests for removal of content. Turkey specified over 8,000 accounts that from which it wanted content removed.

However, during that same period, the U.S. government made 2,673 requests for account information for over 7,400 specific accounts. And in 79 percent of those cases Twitter produced some information.

That contrasts sharply with Twitter's decision not to release any account information in response to requests made by both Turkey and Russia during that time.

The company said they included the legal requests where they removed reported content due to terms of service violations, in order to enhance transparency around the actions they take in response to such requests.

When Twitter released their first transparency report in 2012, they stated that among their top goals was to hold governments accountable.


By Hannah Albarazi - Follow her on Twitter


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