Microsoft Stands Up To FBI Over Customer Data


Praxius
+1
#1  Top Rated Post
Microsoft Stands Up To FBI Over Customer Data - Forbes

Quote:

Eager to promote its privacy credentials, Microsoft has revealed that it’s successfully seen off the FBI in court over a request for customer information.

Documents released this week show that the company received a National Security Letter (NSL) last year asking for “several categories of information” relating to a single user account for one of its enterprise customers. As an NSL, the application is subject to a gagging order, meaning that Microsoft wasn’t able to reveal its existence to the customer – the focus of its complaint.

Microsoft has strong policies on guarding customer data, winning it top marks in the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Who Has Your Back report last week. “EFF believes that National Security Letters (NSLs) – secretive FBI orders for user data accompanied by a gag provision – are a violation of the Constitution,” says the EFF. “We think it is vital that companies are as forthcoming as legally allowable about these national security requests to help shed light on government abuses of contested surveillance powers.”

.....continued

 
BaalsTears
+1
#2
It will be a long twilight struggle with Leviathan.
 
Praxius
#3
The report does further explain that the FBI can and does eventually obtained data through other legal means, but it makes me wonder if Microsoft does the same thing for other nations and businesses that do not fall under the US Constitution.
 
PoliticalNick
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by PraxiusView Post

The report does further explain that the FBI can and does eventually obtained data through other legal means, but it makes me wonder if Microsoft does the same thing for other nations and businesses that do not fall under the US Constitution.

I would be more concerned with why it doesn't protect the privacy of individuals.
 
BaalsTears
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by PraxiusView Post

The report does further explain that the FBI can and does eventually obtained data through other legal means, but it makes me wonder if Microsoft does the same thing for other nations and businesses that do not fall under the US Constitution.

I don't know generally, but any foreign based enterprise doing business in China must do the bidding of the Chinese Communist Party or its state apparatus. It's reasonable to assume this is the prevailing practice in most locales.
 
Praxius
#6
From the above link:

Quote:

Last month, for example, Judge James Francis of the New York Southern District Court ruled that Microsoft was obliged to hand over the emails and personal information of a US customer, even though that data was stored on Irish servers.

What the FBI has achieved by backing off is avoid a high-profile court case at a rather inconvenient time. A similar test case brought by an unnamed telecommunications company in 2011 led to a ruling last year that such gagging orders were unconstitutional. This ruling, though, is currently under appeal in a case that’s likely to last for much of this year. The FBI is undoubtedly reluctant to muddy the waters, particularly with such a well-resourced opponent as Microsoft.

Quote: Originally Posted by PoliticalNickView Post

I would be more concerned with why it doesn't protect the privacy of individuals.

Well they didn't exactly say they didn't protect individuals, they just said they don't "notify" individuals when there is a request for their information, like they do for businesses.

Quote:

Late last year, Microsoft pledged to notify business and enterprise customers – though not, it’s worth noting, private customers – when it receives a legal order relating to their data.

 

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