Facebook Reveals How Often Governments Asked For User Data

Approximately 60 percent of US requests

ByAlyssa Newcomb
April 29, 2016, 2:23 PM

— -- Governments are asking Facebook for more data than ever before, according to the company's bi-annual Global Government Requests report.

"Overall, we continue to see an increase globally in government requests for user data and content restrictions pursuant to local law," Chris Sonderby, Facebook's deputy general counsel said in a blog post.

Global government requests for account data increased by 12 percent in the second half of 2015 -- from 41,214 requests to 46,763. Facebook is also including non-disclosure orders in the report and said approximately 60 percent of the requests the company received from law enforcement in the United States contained provisions that prohibited Facebook from notifying a user.

"As we have emphasized many times, Facebook does not provide any government with 'back doors' or direct access to people’s data," Sonderby wrote. "We scrutinize each request for user data we receive for legal sufficiency, no matter which country is making the request. If a request appears to be deficient or overly broad, we push back hard and will fight in court, if necessary."

Facebook received "0 to 499" requests relating to national security in the United States, according to the report, which adds the company is bound to report this data in bands of 500. They received 19,235 total requests in the United States.

Facebook produced at least some user data in more than 81 percent of the cases where the U.S. government made a request.

ABC News Live

ABC News Live

24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events