Fight for the Future


Fight for the Future launches “Corporate Scorecard” grading major tech companies on whether they publicly fight for user privacy

Posted 08:13 EDT on October 21, 2015

23 major tech companies oppose CISA, while 12 support it or are silent

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 21st, 2015

Contact: Holmes Wilson, 614-465-6371, press@fightforthefuture.org

Digital rights group Fight for the Future has launched a “Corporate Scorecard” that grades more than 30 of the world’s largest technology companies based on their public positions on key U.S. policy questions affecting Internet users’ privacy and security.

View the scorecard here: https://www.decidethefuture.org/#corporate

The scorecard divides companies into two groups, “Team Internet” and “Team NSA,” based on their stated positions. It grades companies on three current policy questions: Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) reform, support or opposition for government backdoors in encryption, and the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA), which just hit the Senate floor last night.

“People trust these companies with a staggering amount of personal information, and we need ways to hold them accountable to ensure they keep our data safe from both attackers and the government,” said Evan Greer, campaign director of Fight for the Future. “It’s not enough for companies to employ basic security practices, they need to be actively fighting for their users’ basic rights when key policy questions come up. Politicians constantly claim the support of the tech industry when attempting to undermine our privacy, so these companies have a responsibility to fight back.”

To be included on “Team Internet” a company must receive a “star” on all three issues. The scorecard only considered public statements made by companies in official blog posts, tweets, to the media, or via their industry associations. Remaining silent on essential policy questions that affect a company’s users was also counted against that company’s score. Companies that took a particularly strong stand, issuing their own statement rather than through an industry association, received a special seal denoting that they went “above and beyond.”

The scorecard shows that the majority of technology companies are aligned with their users in opposing policy that would lead to more government surveillance. 23 of the companies, for example, oppose CISA, including Google, Microsoft, Apple, Twitter, Yahoo, Yelp, Netflix, Amazon, Ebay, Wikipedia, and Dropbox. Apple and Dropbox joined this list yesterday, when they came out unequivocally against CISA.

Internet Service Providers like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T received among the worst scores, ending up on “Team NSA” along with companies like Xerox, Priceline, and Expedia. IBM, LinkedIn, HP, and Intel also ended up on “Team NSA” primarily due to their support for or silence on CISA.

Fight for the Future has run multiple pressure campaigns in recent months calling on technology companies to take public positions on CISA. The Business Software Alliance (BSA), for example, had initially released a letter that appeared to support the bill, but quickly retracted that position after it sparked a public backlash and calls for boycotts.

For more details on Fight for the Future’s recent campaigns around issues of user privacy and tech company accountability, see our press release from yesterday.

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Fight for the Future is a grassroots advocacy group with more than 1.4 million members that fights to protect the Internet as a powerful platform for freedom of expression and social change. They’re best known for organizing the massive online protests against SOPA, for net neutrality, and against government surveillance. Learn more at https://www.fightforthefuture.org and https://www.twitter.com/fightfortheftr

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