Firms to be able to tell public some spy-related details

Technology companies have reached a deal that will allow them to tell the public in greater detail about the spying-related court orders they receive, the US Justice Department has said.

The agreement would settle demands from companies such as Google and Microsoft for more leeway to disclose data about the court orders.

Companies will now be able to disclose:

  • The number of orders from the government related to criminal activity
  • The number of orders from the government related to secret national security
  • The number of orders from a foreign intelligence service related to secret national security
  • If those orders covered just email addresses or further information

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US & UK spies 'able to access personal data via phone apps'

US and British intelligence agencies are able to gain access to personal data from smartphone apps including Angry Birds and social media sites such as Facebook and YouTube, according to documents taken by ex-US spy contractor Edward Snowden.