India has ranked second in the world for accessing private details of its citizens, just behind the United States, according to a transparency report from Google. The data lists out requests it received from governments around the world to access information on the users of its various services.
In the first half of the year, India made 2,319 requests involving 3,467 user, according to an article Thursday by Times of India (TOI). In comparison, the U.S. made 7,969 requests over the same period. Brazil came in third with 1,566 requests.
According to the data, there were 20,938 requests for user data during the January-June period. The requests include complete access to Gmail, chat logs, Orkut profile search terms and etc. These reports are prepared by Google every six months, and were started in July to December 2009, noted TOI.
"Though India is a large country with a significant number of internet users, this data is nonetheless an indicator of growing surveillance," said Pranesh Prakash, policy director at Centre for Internet and Society (CIS), in the article.
"India lacks a general privacy law that helps set guidelines for such user requests, despite privacy being a constitutional right as part of the right to life," said Prakash.