Corporate Transparency

According to the Transparency Reporting Index by Access Now, 61 companies across the globe have released transparency reports as of 2015, seven of which have revealed that they received requests from the Hong Kong government. This report also includes additional information from these seven SPs.

The first transparency report was published by Google in 2010, revealing the number of requests for information about its users and requests to remove content, with the aim of increasing the transparency around handling such issues. After the Edward Snowden leaks in 2013, a growing number of internet and telecommunication companies published their transparency reports amid increasing concern over privacy by the public, and this has become an ever more common practice in the information and communication technology (ICT) industry. However, no Hong Kong tech firm has pursued such a practice to date.

 

Company Year of first release of transparency report Year of first release of HK requests Country where headquarters is located Average annual number of requests Webpages
Google 2010 2010 US 490 Google Transparency Report
Microsoft 2012 2012 US 662 Microsoft Transaparency Hub
Twitter 2012 2013 US 1 Twitter Transparency Report
Yahoo 2013 2013 US 960 Yahoo Transparency Report
Apple[1] 2013 2013 US 820 Report on Government Information Requests
Facebook 2013 2013 US 62 Government Requests Report
Verizon 2013 2014 US 1 Verizon Transparency Report

[1] The numbers from Apple include device requests and total an average of 781 a year from 2013. The vast majority of the requests Apple receive from law enforcement relate to information about lost or stolen devices. Device requests may also include requests for customer contact information provided to register a device with Apple or the date(s) the device used Apple services.