, tech companies have a great deal of our data in their hands, and thanks to whistleblower Edward Snowden
, we know that the government wants as much of it as possible--and has been too successful in that regard. In some cases, there’s just nothing much a company can do when the NSA
comes knocking with a warrant, but there is a spectrum of cooperation, protection, and advocacy that various companies employ.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF
) has created a list of many tech companies and charted out a star rating system with six categories:
-Requires a warrant for content
-Tells users about government data requests
-Publishes transparency reports
-Publishes law enforcement guidelines
-Fights for users’ privacy rights in courts
-Fights for users’ privacy rights in Congress
(Click to enlarge)
The results are intriguing. There were several six-star companies, and it’s good to see that some major names are on that list including Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, and Yahoo. Credo Mobile, Dropbox, and Sonic.net also had six stars. The report noted that Apple and Yahoo in particular have dramatically improved in these regards since last year.
Some losers on the list include Amazon, which requires a warrant and fights for rights in court but nothing else; AT&T, which only publishes transparency reports and law enforcement guidelines; and Snapchat (little surprise there), which does nothing more than publish law enforcement guidelines.
Plenty of other companies fall somewhere in the middle. The whole list is freely available for your peepers here