GLOBAL ECONOMY

U.S. Heads List Of Countries Requesting User Info From Google; Brazil, Spain In Top Ten

The decision gives Europeans the means to polish their online reputations by petitioning Google and other search engines to remove potentially damaging links to newspaper articles and other websites with embarrassing information about their past activities. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The decision gives Europeans the means to polish their online reputations by petitioning Google and other search engines to remove potentially damaging links to newspaper articles and other websites with embarrassing information about their past activities. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)  (2014 Getty Images)

A new study looking at law enforcement and access to online information found that the United States is far and away the world’s leader in asking web giant Google for information about users, but some Latin countries are not too innocent themselves.

Google’s latest Transparency Report claims that the U.S. submitted 21,492 requests for data on Google users last year, with Google producing at least some data for 83 percent of those requests. India clocked in at No. 2 with 5,204 requests, and Google complied with approximately 65 percent of them.

Both Brazil and Spain made the list, with the South American nation making 2,324 requests and the Iberian nation making 1,192.

Infographic: These Countries Are the Most Eager for Google's User Data | Statista
You will find more statistics at Statista

Brazil's government has been a harsh critic of the spying tactics of the U.S.’s National Security Agency, and the two nations are currently in the midst of diplomatic spat over the matter.  

According to reports, Brazil has been the top Latin American NSA target, with data on billions of emails and telephone calls amassed. Other Latin American nations, such as Mexico, were also targeted, but thus far Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has been the most vocal regional critic of the espionage.

While President Barack Obama has cancelled spying on close allies, the damage appears to have already been done and many leaders in Europe seem to take Brazil’s side, especially in light of revelations that the NSA also listened in on some EU institutions and even German Chancellor Angela Merkel's own cell phone.

Argentina, Bolivia and Peru also put in requests to Google for information but did not rank in the Top Ten.

"We hope this ... will shine some light on the appropriate scope and authority of government requests to obtain user data around the globe," the report read.

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