Judge Orders Google To Turn Over Gmail Account To Feds

from the trust-is-fading... dept

For all of those worried about the Department of Justice forcing Google to turn over search data, it seems there's another case that may be even more interesting. A judge has ordered Google to comply with a subpoena to turn over someone's complete Gmail account records, including any deleted messages they still have on a server. This isn't surprising. The guy was charged with a crime by the FTC and eventually settled, but the FTC is trying to track down where he hid his assets. It's pretty standard for them to subpoena anyone who might have such info -- in this case Google, since the guy used Gmail. The guy tossed up some reasons why Google shouldn't turn over his Gmail account (revealing confidential info and attorney-client privileged communications, along with the idea that this was unfair since he'd have to pay his attorneys to sift through all the data as well, and that would cost too much). However, in the end, the judge didn't find any of his reasons very convincing. Not a huge surprise, but a reminder for those of you using your Gmail for criminal activity.
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  1. identicon
    Henry Havelock Ellis 1929, 30 Mar 2006 @ 4:10pm

    ASSUME PRIVACY IS NON-EXISTENT

    Privacy is an illusion. Police Agencies routinely sign generic statements saying, "...they were acting suspicious..." and on court-cross-examination it's discovered what they really meant was "they were not acting like the robot I expected them to act like...well they acted like a poor liberal that had a mind of their own, and that to me is very suspicious..." but in most cases this takes place =after= the subpoena or illegal search and the persons rights have already been violated. There arent enough paid attorneys to defend these cases, because the money is on the side of law-enforcement agencies, which results in this reality being more the rule than the exception. In some cases, people are factually innocent of an alleged crime but are charged because of past personal history and the illegal means that were used to discover that personal history. Such as someone who visited adult (not child) porn sites on their computer and are charged with a crime against a child due to the illegal infringement and association. Also to note I believe it was the President of Oracle Corp who once said about computer users seeking privacy, to paraphrase: "(...Get over it, you have none...)" Finally, virtually every ISP and Software giant today has escape clauses in their User Agreements or Privacy Policies because they know that they cannot guarantee privacy, and know that in most cases you are screwed. The moral of this story is: "Dont trust computers or the people promoting them and dont trust that the government will act honestly towards you." Havelock Ellis' famous saying about progress was right - but we ignored him long ago.

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