Microsoft saw the number of requests from law enforcement agencies around the world asking for customer account information go down for all of 2013 compared to 2012. While the company got 75,378 such requests in 2012, 2013 saw a total of 72,279 inquires.
These numbers come from Microsoft's latest Law Enforcement Requests Report. The company first started offering this information a year ago when it revealed data for all of 2012. Since then it has issued updates every six months. For the first half of 2013, it recorded 37,196 requests from law enforcement agencies that could have impacted as many as 66,539 customer accounts. This week's update covers the second half of 2013, which Microsoft said 35,083 requests impacting 58,676 accounts were received.
Microsoft said 17.85 percent of those requests ended up with no data discovered that were related to the inquiries, while 3.4 percent were outright rejected by the company. 76 percent of the requests resulted in the reveal of what Microsoft calls "non-content data" to law enforcement agencies. This information includes a person's name, email address, state, country, zip code, and IP address.
Only 2.32 percent of the requests for Microsoft customer account info in the last six months of 2013 resulted in content data being disclosed to the appropriate authorities. Examples of that kind of content include words in an email or photo and files stored in Microsoft's OneDrive service. Microsoft says that it requires a court order before it would disclose that kind of information.
In January, Microsoft revealed that a series of cyber attacks that the company suffered in early 2014 resulted in "documents associated with law enforcement inquiries" being taken from their networks. Microsoft has not offered an update on their investigation since that time.
Source: Microsoft | Image via Microsoft