(Ping! Zine Web Tech Magazine) – The i2Coalition, an organization providing an integral voice for the hosting community on Internet issues, on Thursday announced that it had joined with top tech providers including Google, Microsoft and Apple to urge the U.S. government to provide more information on data requests.
A letter addressed to top U.S. government officials including President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder and House Speaker John Boehner outlined a number of steps to make the process more transparent.
“We the undersigned are writing to urge greater transparency around national security-related requests by the US government to Internet, telephone, and web-based service providers for information about their users and subscribers,” stated the signees.
Meanwhile, the companies and organizations are specifically asking that they be allowed to regularly report on the number of government requests they receive, how many individuals they pertain to, along with the number of requests made under “each authority.”
The initiative arrives in the wake of former NSA employee Edward Snowden’s revelation that the U.S. government collected the telephone data of its citizens. First started under President George W. Bush, the Obama administration has maintained the program helps to defend against terrorism. While most agree that protecting the homeland is important, some are concerned that the process isn’t transparent enough and doesn’t properly protect citizens’ constitutional and privacy rights.