(The Hosting News) – The Internet Infrastructure Coalition (i2Coalition) today joined other leaders from a wide spectrum of industries in signing a letter to President Obama, Attorney General Holder, and other leaders in government. The letter urges greater transparency in national security-related requests by the US government to Internet, telephone, and web-based service providers for information about their users and subscribers. The full text of the letter can be found by clicking here, and an excerpt and the full list of companies and groups that signed can be found below.
“First, the US government should ensure that those companies who are entrusted with the privacy and security of their users’ data are allowed to regularly report statistics reflecting:
• The number of government requests for information about their users made under specific legal authorities such as Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act, Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act, the various National Security Letter (NSL) statutes, and others;
• The number of individuals, accounts, or devices for which information was requested under each authority; and
• The number of requests under each authority that sought communications content, basic subscriber information, and/or other information.
Second, the government should also augment the annual reporting that is already required by statute by issuing its own regular “transparency report” providing the same information: the total number of requests under specific authorities for specific types of data, and the number of individuals affected by each.
As an initial step, we request that the Department of Justice, on behalf of the relevant executive branch agencies, agree that Internet, telephone, and web-based service providers may publish specific numbers regarding government requests authorized under specific national security authorities, including the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and the NSL statutes. We further urge Congress to pass legislation requiring comprehensive transparency reporting by the federal government and clearly allowing for transparency reporting by companies without requiring companies to first seek permission from the government or the FISA Court.
Nonprofit Organizations & Trade Associations
American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression
American Civil Liberties Union
American Library Association
American Society of News Editors
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
National Coalition Against Censorship
New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute
Project On Government Oversight
Reporters Committee for Freedom of The Press
Reporters Without Borders
World Press Freedom Committee
Americans for Tax Reform
Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law School
Center for Democracy & Technology
Center for Effective Government
Committee to Protect Journalists
Competitive Enterprise Institute
Computer & Communications Industry Association
The Constitution Project
Electronic Frontier Foundation
First Amendment Coalition
Foundation for Innovation and Internet Freedom
Freedom to Read Foundation
Global Network Initiative
Human Rights Watch
Internet Infrastructure Coalition
Boston Common Asset Management
Domini Social Investments
F&C Asset Management Plc
New Atlantic Ventures
Union Square Ventures
The Internet Infrastructure Coalition (i2Coalition) supports those who build the nuts and bolts of the Internet, and we treat it like the noble profession that it is. We believe the continued growth of the Internet is vital for growing an environment of innovation and seek to engage in ways to foster success of the Internet and Internet infrastructure industry. We seek to influence decision makers to weigh decisions on whether they are good or bad for the Internet economy and its foundational industries. In short, we seek to foster growth within the Internet infrastructure industry by driving others to harness the Internet’s full potential. To learn more about i2Coalition, visit www.i2Coalition.com.