EFF: Warrantless Email Search Case, Denver Court

April 14th, 2010  http://www.eff.org/press/archives/2010/04/13 

EFF Backs Yahoo! to Protect User from Warrantless Email Search

Joins With Google and Others to Argue for Fourth Amendment Protection of Email

Denver – The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) along with Google and numerous other public interest organizations and Internet industry associations joined with Yahoo! in asking a federal court Tuesday to block a government attempt to access the contents of a Yahoo! email account without a search warrant based on probable cause. 

For the full amicus brief:
http://www.eff.org/files/filenode/inreusaorder18/AmiciBriefYahooEmails.p…

For more on this case:
http://www.eff.org/cases/re-application-united-states-america-order

For more on Digital Due Process:
http://www.digitaldueprocess.org

Yahoo! is challenging the government request before a federal magistrate judge in Denver, arguing that the SCA and Fourth Amendment require the government to get a search warrant before compelling Yahoo! to disclose the email. In an amicus brief filed in support of Yahoo! Tuesday, EFF says that the company is simply following the law and protecting the constitutional privacy rights of its customers.

“The government is trying to evade federal privacy law and the Constitution,” said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Kevin Bankston. “The Fourth Amendment protects these stored emails, just like it does our private papers. We all have a reasonable expectation of privacy in the contents of our email accounts, and the government should have to make a showing of probable cause to a judge before it rifles through our private communications.”   See link for entire article and more privacy and other issues.

Petdefense Note: Even if Congress “intended” to exclude “opened” emails, it is probably not the real question; the real question would be, does the law as stated by the government invade a reasonable expectation of privacy? and why can’t the government simply get the search warrant? *Hint hint*

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