Netherlands wanted Apple’s help obtaining data on 341 individual devices

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Dutch government's requests to obtain data from Apple devices highly increased during the second half of 2015, according to a biannual report by Apple. In total the Dutch authorities submitted data requests for 341 Apple devices, in 39 requests.

In 16 of these requests (41%) Apple provided the requested data. Six months before there were 25 requests – for 85 devices – and data was provided in only 12 of them.

The Netherlands also requested information on 13 Apple accounts, and in in 5 cases data were disclosed. According to Apple, the vast majority of device requests they receive is related to information about lost or stolen devices. But an account request “involves providing information about an account holder’s iTunes or iCloud account, such as a name and an address. In certain cases, we are asked to provide customers’ iCloud content, which may include stored photos, email, iOS device backups, documents, contacts, calendars, and bookmarks”, Apple states in the report.

Although this number of device requests is a record for Netherlands, it still remains quite small compared to other similar European countries: Belgium, for example, had 107 requests for 221 devices, while Ireland had 252 requests for 671 devices.

Apple started publishing this report 2013, when datagate scandal came out. The company has been praised more than once for its transparency by EFF, a no-profit international organisation of lawyers who has to aim the safeguard of the rights in the current digital era. 

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