Time sure flies by, Ghosties.
The first part of 2020 is already gone.
And you know what this means, right?
It’s time for our Q1 transparency report.
The beginning of a new decade
Publishing our transparency reports is a tradition we hold dear.
Back in 2011, we were the first VPN provider to provide our Ghosties with the number of requests for data we get from various authorities. And we’ve been sharing this information with you ever since.
In 2019, we decided to change our pattern and publish a quarterly transparency report. Here’s what we published so far:
2020 marks a new decade for us, but also the second year of our three-month reports.
And Q1 is finally here! 😊
Let’s check the data.
Our Q1 numbers
So, 2020 starts with a new chapter in our transparency reports.
Compared to our previous report, there’s a 5,9% decrease in the number of total requests.
As always, let’s break it down into three categories:
- DMCA complaints;
- Malicious activity flags;
- Police requests.
Since we don’t keep any user records, we had nothing to share with the authorities.
On to the numbers!
DMCA complaints are copyright infringement claims.
Various companies can file a DMCA notice on behalf of copyright holders when something has been shared illegally using one of our IP addresses.
DMCA complaints are the most common type of request we receive.
In Q1 of 2020, they make up a whopping 92% of all the requests we received. There’s an 81% increase compared to our most recent transparency report.
March was by far the peak. Not just for DMCA complaints but for online activity overall. Seeing as how one-third of the human population was under lockdown, the figure doesn’t come as a surprise.
Malicious activity flags
Malicious activity flags usually signal abusive behaviors done with a CyberGhost VPN IP address. This can range from DDoS attacks, automated spam emails, botnets, to suspicious login attempts.
This type of request makes up 7% of all the ones we got.
Compared to the previous quarter, there’s an 86% decrease in malicious activity flags.
Law enforcement agencies and local police departments from all over the world send us these types of requests. This happens when they trace back to a datacenter an IP address used for illegal activities.
Usually, the authorities are looking for details that can aid investigations, like the original IP address of the perpetrator.
Less than 1% of all the requests we receive are from the police.
This number drastically dropped from last quarter’s 21 to just 4 police requests this time around.
New year, same fight for privacy and anonymity
Privacy is a fundamental right. That’s what we believe and what we’ve advocated for since we’ve been around.
But to turn our mission into a reality, we need to have the best tools to help you beat censorship and bypass restrictions.
And this year, with contact tracing apps, increased cyberattacks, and digital surveillance on the rise, we’re stepping up and facing new challenges in the world of cybersecurity.
What we’ve done so far
We’ve been working hard ever since the year started.
We’ve dropped L2TP and PPTP as our supported protocols. With more complex data mining and surveillance solutions becoming available on the market, the two older protocols are becoming outdated.
To ensure the utmost security and privacy for all our Ghosties, we’ve turned an eye to WireGuard®. WireGuard® is a free and open-source communication protocol that aims to combine the security of the OpenVPN protocol with the speed of (the now easier to block) IPsec.
The release of our Linux app came with our first implementation of WireGuard®. Now, it’s already in beta on iOS devices. And our dev team is looking to bring it to other operating systems as well. 😉
And since you can never be too careful with your private information, we’ve also released our CyberGhost Secret Photo Vault app for iOS. It guards your private photos and videos by locking them with PIN protection. Or biometric login. Whichever one is best for you.
We’re not stopping here
We’ve been protecting digital lives for years now. And we’re currently keeping safe over 36 million people worldwide. It’s a responsibility we take to the heart.
Our strict No Logs policy is the core of our fight for digital privacy.
The only way to secure data is not to store it.Robert Knapp, CyberGhost VPN co-founder
Throughout the rest of 2020, we’ll continue reporting the number of legal requests we receive every three months.
Stay tuned and subscribe to our newsletter to find out more about what we’re doing.
Until next time, stay safe and secure!
“WireGuard” is a registered trademark of Jason A. Donenfeld.