Recently Browsing 0 members
No registered users viewing this page.
By Usama Jawad96
Microsoft reveals details of requests filed by U.S. government to access customer data
by Usama Jawad
Microsoft has insisted on numerous occasions that it believes that organizations should play an active role in ensuring the privacy of their customers rather than simply relying on state legislature. Now, the company has revealed details of three instances where it fought for its customers' right to know that access to their data has been requested by the U.S. government.
Original gavel image via Brian Turner / Flickr Microsoft believes that its customers need to know when the government has requested access to their emails or other documents. As such, the company has challenged at least three secrecy orders in the past year in favor of its enterprise customers knowing about requests from law enforcement.
The first case was from a federal court in Maryland which prohibited it from informing the customer about an ongoing investigation. Microsoft challenged this decision in December 2019, with the case going in its favor in January 2020. The court documents were unsealed this week and can be viewed here. Although the organization's name has been redacted, the document reveals that while Microsoft initially complied to the government request, it later challenged that the counsel for the company in question needs to know about the order. However, the court strictly emphasized that if information is disclosed to individuals other than the counsel - especially the people being targeted in the investigation -, the whole operation would be jeopardized.
In the second case, there was a similar request from a federal court in New York, which Microsoft challenged in September 2020. The U.S. government agreed to inform the customer in October 2020 and the unsealed email related to this matter can be seen here. Once again, the customer in question has not been explicitly named.
The third case is an ongoing one which Microsoft has been fighting for the past two years. This also comes from another federal court in New York. Recently, the company has received legal support from various organizations and partners such as Amazon, Google, Apple, Associated Press, and The Washington Post, among others. This aid comes in the form of five amicus briefs - which are supporting documents through which the firms will be providing technical assistance and expertise to the court.
Microsoft went on to say that:
It is important to remember that these three cases highlighted by Microsoft are likely only some of the secrecy orders that the company has fought against. There are possibly other requests that the Redmond tech giant is not allowed to disclose as of yet because court orders for those have not yet been unsealed. Regardless, it does give a clear view that Microsoft is committed to ensuring the privacy of its customers and safeguarding their legal rights.
MONKTON, MD (AP) ? A Maryland teenager told police he planned to use a stolen handgun to kill his parents, then drive to his high school and kill students and teachers as revenge for years of bullying he suffered, according to court documents released Wednesday.
Sash Alexander Nemphos, 16, of Monkton, is charged as an adult, Baltimore County Police said in a tweet. The charges include possession of a destructive device, having a dangerous weapon on school property and theft, according to the probable cause documents.
Nemphos was confronted Saturday by police over thefts from a car and business, including a handgun. After asking him about the stolen gun several times, the 10th-grader, who officers said was clearly intoxicated, told police he was going to take the gun, drive to his school Monday, shoot the school officer, and then take the officer's gun to "kill as many teachers and students as he could."
The documents say the teen also said he had made several bombs to blow up George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology.
Police recovered from his home a handgun, three crude, homemade explosives, a suicide note, and a journal with all his plans, the probable cause documents said. He was arrested at his home.
Nemphos told officers he had intended to go through with his plan on Halloween and had taken the gun in his backpack to school. But he had forgotten the bombs so he aborted his plan, he said. He also said he was too drunk to carry out the plan, the documents said.
He said he was going to try again Monday and would stay sober to do it, the documents said.
Nemphos told police he had been bullied for years and has told teachers, but nothing was ever done.
A Maryland mother stabbed two of her children to death and wounded two others while attempting an exorcism, authorities said.
Police said they found the four children Friday morning after a neighbor called 911 to report suspicious activity at the home. The neighbor reported seeing a car with a door open and a knife next to it.
Zakieya L. Avery, 28, was charged Saturday with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted first-degree murder, Montgomery County Police said in a statement.
A second woman, who was briefly hospitalized after the incident, was also charged in the two deaths. Police believe she is not related to the family, but lived at the same residence in Germantown.
Norell Harris, 1, and his sister, Zyana Harris, 2, suffered fatal stab wounds while their siblings, ages 5 and 8, were hospitalized with injuries, authorities said.
Exorcism is a ritual aimed at defeating purported evil spirits or demons. Authorities did not provide additional details on why they suspected exorcism.