Earlier this month, the ethical question of whether Microsoft may be compromising cutting edge research was raised by someone from the inside – something that cannot be taken lightly, whether you’re in the sector or not. Something new has come up, though, with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) releasing a report on how entities protect your data from the government; and guess what? Microsoft comes out smelling like roses!

Microsoft's Got Your Back When It Comes To Privacy, According To Study


This is the fourth annual report of the EFF, which takes a look at the major companies we entrust our data with, and what tangible things they to do protect our data. They take into account 6 factors:

  1. Requires a warrant for content
  2. Tells users about government data requests
  3. Publishes transparency reports
  4. Publishes law enforcement guidelines
  5. Fights for users’ privacy rights in courts
  6. Fights for users’ privacy rights in Congress

Interestingly, Microsoft got a star for each item. Here’s a snippet of the chart published by the EFF.


As you can see, Apple, Google, Facebook, and Dropbox also scored perfectly. I don’t know if it’s just me, but it makes me wonder since we continue to hear about controversial points about privacy issues related to the aforementioned companies.

Based on the EFF report, however, everything has been verified and they even got in touch with the companies they’ve assessed:

The categories we evaluate in this report represent objectively verifiable, public criteria and so cannot and do not evaluate secret surveillance. We compiled the information in this report by examining each company’s published terms of service, privacy policy, transparency report, and guidelines for law enforcement requests, if any. As part of our evaluation, we contacted each company to explain our findings and to give them an opportunity to provide evidence of improving policies and practices.

So does this mean that we can 100% rest assured that our data is safe with these companies? What do you think about the report? Does Microsoft (and others) truly have our backs?

[Images via itpro & npr]