Twitter is suing U.S. Justice Department to be able to release more information about government surveillance of its users, the Associated Press reports. The social media company filed suit yesterday in a California federal court to publish its full “transparency report,” which documents government requests for user information. Twitter Inc. published a surveillance report in July but couldn’t include the exact number of national security requests it received because Internet companies are prohibited from disclosing that information, even if they didn’t get any requests.
The San Francisco-based company believes it’s entitled under the First Amendment to “respond to our users’ concerns and to the statements of U.S. government officials by providing information about the scope of U.S. government surveillance.” The U.S. government has been able to access phone networks and high-speed Internet traffic to catch suspected criminals and terrorists. The FBI also started pushing technology companies like Google, Skype and others to guarantee access to their data streams and grab emails, video chats, pictures and more. Yahoo was threatened with a daily fine of $250,000 by the U.S. government if it didn’t comply with demands to give up information on its users.