Snapchat publishes first-ever transparency report

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Instant messaging service Snapchat has published its first-ever transparency report on government request for user data.

Snapchat’s data request report covers a four-month period starting November 1, 2014 to February 28, 2015 and provides insight on how much information different governments asked for during the period.

As per the report, the messaging service received 375 requests from US law enforcement officials, and produced at least some data in 92 per cent of the cases. The requests were mostly in the form of subpoenas, warrants or court orders, along with a smaller number of emergency requests.

Other countries including Britain, Belgium, France, Canada, Ireland, Hungary and Norway made 28 user data requests, for which information was produced for just 21 per cent of them. The UK, France and Canada accounted for most of the requests, at 10, 9 and 3, respectively.

“While the vast majority of Snapchatters use Snapchat for fun, it’s important that law enforcement is able to investigate illegal activity,” Snapchat said in a blog post announcing the report.

“We want to be clear that we comply with valid legal requests.”

“Privacy and security are core values here at Snapchat and we strongly oppose any initiative that would deliberately weaken the security of our systems,” the blog post read.

Snapchat announced that it will release its first full transparency report in July, and from there on out it will release it bi-annually.

“We’re committed to keeping your data secure and we will update this report bi-annually”, noted Snapchat.