6 months ago, Facebook released the Government Requests Report, a transparency report they release bi-annually that shows the requests they receive from governments and how many they actually honoured. Facebook has an audience of 1.65 billion people and government agencies cannot simply ignore it if they are looking for a certain people on the network.
Facebook released their latest Global Government Request Report yesterday which covered the second half of 2015. The company revealed in that time, the total number of requests jumped 13% from 41,214 requests to 46,763 and the total number of items restricted for violation local law more than doubled to 55,827 items up from 20,568.
Kenyan government agencies were recorded to have issued 5 requests of which 1 request was honored in the first half of the year. Interestingly enough from the latest data , Kenya did not issue any requests in the second half of the year. In the case for Nigeria for example, there was 1 request for 96 accounts which was honoured by Facebook and Tanzania too had 1 request for 1 account and it was not honoured by the company.
One interesting development Facebook revealed in this report was the use of non disclosure orders. In the case for the US, 60% of requests for user data contained non disclosure orders which prevented Facebook from notifying users. This is concerning since authorities will be able to obtain data from you without the company notifying you of what is happening.
Privacy is one of the biggest concerns when using social networks and that is why Facebook emphasizes that they don’t provide governments with back doors so as to access data from its users. With the new developments like the use of non-disclosure agreements, you may have to be keen of what you post on Facebook.