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Yahoo, Feds Battle Over E-Mail Privacy!

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posted on Apr, 14 2010 @ 09:01 PM
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Full Article- Wired.com


Yahoo and federal prosecutors in Colorado are embroiled in a privacy battle that’s testing whether the Constitution’s warrant requirements apply to Americans’ e-mail. The legal dust-up, unsealed late Tuesday, concerns a 1986 law that already allows the government to obtain a suspect’s e-mail from an ISP or webmail provider without a probable-cause warrant, once it’s been stored for 180 days or more. The government now contends it can get e-mail under 180-days old if that e-mail has been read by the owner, and the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment protections don’t apply.


Holy Jesus I never knew that the4th amendment of the Constitution of the United States applies in MOST privacy cases, just not one's pertaining to Emails and the Internet.


“The government says the Fourth Amendment does not protect these e-mails,” Kevin Bankston, an EFF lawyer, said in a telephone interview Wednesday. “What we’re talking about is archives of our personal correspondence that they would need a warrant to get from your computer but not from the server.

If the courts adopt the government’s position, the vast majority of Americans’ e-mail would be accessible to the government without probable cause, whenever law enforcement believes the messages would be relevant to a criminal investigation, even if the e-mail’s owner is not suspected of wrongdoing.

But all sides agree that obtaining unopened e-mail less than 180 days old requires the authorities to make a probable-cause showing to a judge, and that after 180 days stored e-mail — read or unread — can be accessed without such a warrant.


Well there you have it people. The Fourth Amendment officially does not exist on the internet anymore. Althought this is not surprising news it is however very disturbing on so many levels! Last time I checked my PC is IN my house.

Straight from the Constitution

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.


The 1986 Stored Communications Act was enacted at a time when e-mail generally wasn’t stored on servers at all, but instead passed through them briefly on their way to the recipient’s inbox. In today’s reality, e-mail can, and is, being stored on servers forever. A consortium of businesses, including Google and Microsoft, recently asked Congress to update the law and require probable cause to obtain any e-mail.



[edit on 14-4-2010 by hawaiinguy12]




posted on Apr, 14 2010 @ 09:55 PM
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Just like the Patriot Act
it's a snoop operation
its none of their freggin business
go bother the terrorist computer
hackers in China
and leave Americans alone.
I hope the SCOTUS bust their a$$
like they did with those wire taps
last week



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