Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) Right to Share Documented Details of NSA Thuggery, but More Transparency Needed in Silicon Valley

Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) yesterday released 1,500 pages of documents related to the NSA’s data-collection methods used against them in 2007 and 2008, releasing the documents after winning a court challenge granting them the right to do so. Among other things, the documents reveal that the U.S government threatened them with $250,000 daily fines for withholding the requested user data from them.

Yahoo icon

Re/Code’s Kara Swisher praised  Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) fight to have the documents released, but told CNBC today that more needs to be done to keep users updated on what they are currently doing to combat such requests.

“I like that Yahoo released this and that it’s talking about this issue, but I want to know what they’re doing now, because these issues are just going to become worse and worse going on, and I think the Valley (Silicon Valley) has the power and the influence to really talk about these issues rather loudly and make changes,” Swisher said.

Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) was one of the few companies that denied the NSA’s requests for user data, taking them to court over the requests in 2007 and 2008. Their court challenge and subsequent appeal both eventually failed, and Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) was ordered to provide the requested data on pain of a $250,000 daily fine if they refused.

They gave in at that point and released their data, something that most other companies did without a fight. Swisher believes that while some companies are resisting such incursions as much as possible, the majority give in without a fight, and far greater transparency is needed in Silicon Valley so everyone is aware of what they’re all up against.

“Yeah, I think the Valley (Silicon Valley) folds all the time, I’m of that camp, is that they’re constantly; certain companies, Twitter and others, really are resisting it, of course all the companies will tell you behind the scenes they’re working very hard, but to me I think they really could be a little more public in terms of what they’re doing,” Swisher said.

Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) is up a strong 3.84% today to $42.85 in afternoon trading and 20.2% for the month, as Alibaba, whom they own a 21% stake in, nears its potentially record-breaking IPO.

Disclosure: none