HKTR obtains names of Internet organizations on government request lists

HKTR obtains names of Internet organizations on government request lists

The HK Transparency Project has obtained the names of some of the Internet organizations that have received Hong Kong Government requests for user data or content removal.

This information was missing from the release of data by Gregory So, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, on February 6, 2013.

To seek greater clarity, HKTR wrote to 10 departments cited in the official release to ask for the names of Internet organizations, including ISP’s, OSP’s or websites, to which the Government had sent requests.

Three of the 10 departments — the Office of the Communications Authority, the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department, and the Department of Health — did not respond to the query.

The other seven departments responded, including the Companies Registry, Customs and Excise Department, the Police, the Observatory, the Post Office, the Lands Department and the Inland Revenue Department.

The Companies Registry, Hong Kong Observatory, Post Office and Lands Department offered further information, including the names of the organisations contacted. See a list of those organizations here.

While the IRD responded, it refused to offer further details, citing its legal duty to keep certain information secret. It is unclear if the IRD follows a different set of rules in disclosure matters, or whether the practices of the various Government departments are simply inconsistent.

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