After Beijing unilaterally imposed a brand new nationwide safety regulation on Hong Kong on July 1, many noticed the transfer as an effort by Beijing to crack down on dissent and protests within the semi-autonomous area.
Soon after, a variety of tech giants — together with Microsoft, Twitter and Google — stated they might cease processing requests for consumer information from Hong Kong authorities, fearing that the requested information may find yourself within the fingers of Beijing.
But Apple was noticeably absent from the checklist. Instead, Apple stated it was “assessing” the brand new regulation.
When reached by TechCrunch, Apple didn’t say what number of requests for consumer information it had acquired from Hong Kong authorities because the new nationwide safety regulation went into impact. But the corporate reiterated that it doesn’t obtain requests for consumer content material immediately from Hong Kong. Instead, it depends on a long-established so-called mutual authorized help treaty, permitting U.S. authorities to first overview requests from overseas governments.
Apple stated it shops iCloud information for Hong Kong customers within the United States, so any requests by Hong Kong authorities for consumer content material needs to be first permitted by the Justice Department, and a warrant needs to be issued by a U.S. federal choose earlier than the information could be handed over to Hong Kong.
The firm stated that it acquired a restricted variety of non-content requests from Hong Kong associated to fraud or stolen units, and that the variety of requests it acquired from Hong Kong authorities because the introduction of the nationwide safety regulation can be included in an upcoming transparency report.
Hong Kong authorities made 604 requests for gadget info, 310 requests for monetary information, and 10 requests for consumer account information throughout 2019.
The report additionally stated that Apple acquired 5,295 requests from U.S. authorities through the second half of final 12 months for information associated to 80,235 units, a seven-fold improve from the earlier six months.
Apple additionally acquired four,095 requests from U.S. authorities for consumer information saved in iCloud on 31,780 accounts, twice the variety of accounts affected through the earlier six months.
Most of the requests associated to ongoing return and restore fraud investigations, Apple stated.
The report stated it acquired 2,522 requests from U.S. authorities to protect information on 6,741 consumer accounts, permitting regulation enforcement to acquire the suitable authorized course of to entry the information.
Apple additionally stated it acquired between Zero-499 nationwide safety requests for non-content information on between 15,500 and 15,999 customers or accounts, an…