Megaupload data could be deleted starting Thursday

If you have any important files that were hosted via the Megaupload file sharing service, you could have those files deleted in just a few days. The Associated Press (via NPR.com) reports that the companies that hosted the servers for Megaupload could start getting rid of those files beginning on Thursday.

The story reports that the U.S. Attorney's Office sent a letter on Friday to Carpathia Hosting and Cogent Communications Group, which owns the servers that hosted the Megaupload service. The letter said those companies could start deleting data that used the service on Thursday. Megaupload was shut down earlier this month by US officials and several of its employees, including its founder Kim Dotcom, were arrested on online piracy charges.

The U.S. Attorney's Office's letter also said that the government has made copies of some of the data found on Megaupload's servers. However, none of the servers were physically taken from their hosting locations.

Megaupload's attorney Ira Rothken says that he is trying to keep that data from being deleted from the servers. Not only could 50 million Megaupload users be affected, but Rothken says that those files could be helpful in Megaupload's defense against the online piracy charges. He added, "We're cautiously optimistic at this point that because the United States, as well as Megaupload, should have a common desire to protect consumers, that this type of agreement will get done."

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