IBM says it has not given client data to the U.S. government

Fri Mar 14, 2014 4:19pm EDT
 
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By Marina Lopes

NEW YORK (Reuters) - International Business Machines Corp has not relinquished its customers' data to the U.S. government and would challenge any orders to do so, the company said in a blog post on Friday.

The post by the world's largest technology service provider is the latest backlash by a tech company against U.S. electronic surveillance practices, after published reports on Wednesday that alleged the government used websites to break into computers.

"IBM has not provided client data to the NSA or any other government agency under any surveillance program involving the bulk collection of content or metadata," Robert Weber, IBM's senior vice president of legal and regulatory affairs, wrote in the blog post.

"If the U.S. government were to serve a national security order on IBM to obtain data from an enterprise client and impose a gag order that prohibits IBM from notifying that client, IBM will take appropriate steps to challenge the gag order through judicial action or other means," Weber said.

He added that the New York-based company would challenge national security orders to obtain data stored outside the United States and that efforts to access that data should go through recognized legal channels like treaties.

The NSA has "co-opted" more than 140,000 computers since August 2007 to inject them with spying software, according to a slide leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and published by The Intercept news website on Wednesday.]

In a statement, the NSA said the reports were "inaccurate" and said it does not target users of global Internet services without appropriate legal authority.

"Reports of indiscriminate computer exploitation operations are simply false," the agency said.   Continued...

 
The IBM logo is seen outside the company's offices in Petah Tikva, near Tel Aviv October 24, 2011. REUTERS/Nir Elias