Google asks U.S. feds to clear its name on NSA requests

“Google is asking the government to allow it to release more information about how many national security requests it received as part of an effort to improve the company’s record on privacy issues, which it says has been damaged by recent press reports,” Abby D. Phillip reports for ABC News.

“‘Assertions in the press that our compliance with these requests gives the U.S. government unfettered access to our users’ data are simply untrue. However, government nondisclosure obligations regarding the number of [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] national security requests that Google receives, as well as the number of accounts covered by those requests, fuel that speculation,’ Google’s chief legal officer, Lee Drummond, wrote in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI Director Robert Mueller,” Phillip reports. “The letter comes after two stories in the Guardian and the Washington Post suggested that a National Security Agency program, code-named PRISM, gave the government “direct access” to the servers of several internet companies, including Google.”

Phillip reports, “This latest letter turns the onus back to the government to be more clear about what the companies’ roles have actually been in the PRISM program.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related articles:
U.S. lawmakers urge review of ‘Prism’ domestic spying, Patriot Act – June 10, 2013
PRISM: Do Apple, Google, Facebook have an ethical obligation not to spy on users? – June 8, 2013
Plausible deniability: The strange and unbelievable similarities in the Apple, Google, and Facebook PRISM denials – June 7, 2013
Google’s Larry Page on government eavesdropping: ‘We had not heard of a program called PRISM until yesterday’ – June 7, 2013
Seecrypt app lets iPhone, Android users keep voice calls, text messages away from carriers, government eyes and ears – June 7, 2013
Obama administration defends PRISM data-collection as legal anti-terrorism tool – June 7, 2013
Facebook, Google, Yahoo join Apple in sort-of denying PRISM involvement – June 7, 2013
Report: Intelligence program gives U.S. government direct access to customer data on Apple servers; Apple denies – June 6, 2013


  1. Yeah, right. Even if the government lets them post that information, who says it’s the truth and/or the complete picture? They’ll let GOOG and any other company release a few bits and pieces while the juiciest stuff is “classified” and we’ll never know the difference. All these damn lawyers do is sit around all day thinking up new legalese with trap doors to escape accountability for their actions.

    1. Government can not “clear” Google’s name, because only in March NSA got over 3 billion pieces of data on US citizens (let alone 100 billion pieces of data on supposed foreigners), and it was mostly from Google.

      While Google and others say that there is no direct access to their data for government, they can not deny that they allocate/dump petabytes of data into virtual pools/servers with separate access for the government. This is the trick is used.

  2. I don’t think the press reports make Google, Apple, or any other named company look bad. They’re all in the same boar — the NSA files requests for information, and all of the companies said they only comply with legal, court-ordered requests. There’s not much any company can do if the NSA serves them with a court order to turn over certain information.

  3. Speaking of clearing names, wonder hw the DOJ’s gonna lear Apple’s and wipe the egg off thier faces for prematurely ejaculating and filing an unsubstantiated law suit…?

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