There has been an ongoing case involving the Redmond company against the as it fights a U.S. government search warrant for customer data located on a server in Ireland.
Microsoft’s position is that any attempt to take possession of those letters through a warrant – even one served on the company entrusted with those letters – would constitute a seizure by a foreign government of private information located in another country.
In a nutshell, this case is about how we best protect privacy, ensure that governments keep people safe, and respect national sovereignty while preserving the global nature of the internet. While there are many areas where we disagree with the government, we both agree that outdated electronic privacy laws need to be modernized. The statute in this case, the Electronics Communications Privacy Act, is almost 30 years old. That’s an eternity in the era of information technology.
If you manage or work in the IT field, including having customer information on servers around the world, then this case is very important to your work and should be followed closely.
We live in an age of digital data everywhere and laws governing access to that information need to be brought up to speed so they protect the rights of the individuals involved.
You can catch up on past posts from Microsoft’s Brad Smith, the companies General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal and Corporate Affairs, at the links below: