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Lawsuit challenges government's right to read your e-mail

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Eugene Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-27-06 02:38 PM
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Lawsuit challenges government's right to read your e-mail
Lawsuit challenges government's right to read your e-mail

A seller of "natural male enhancement" products sued after a fraud indictment based
on evidence gleaned from his electronic mail.

By John Reinan, Star Tribune

Last update: December 18, 2006 9:59 PM

The government needs a search warrant if it wants to read the U.S. mail that arrives
at your home. But federal prosecutors say they don't need a search warrant to read
your e-mail messages if those messages happen to be stored in someone else's
computer.

That would include all of the Big Four e-mail providers -- Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail and
Google -- that together hold e-mail accounts for 135 million Americans.

-snip-

Now that law, the Stored Communications Act of 1986, is being challenged in federal
court in Ohio by Steven Warshak, a seller of "natural male enhancement" products
who was indicted for mail fraud and money laundering after federal investigators sifted
through thousands of his e-mails.

The government isn't saying it has unfettered access to e-mail. But e-mail users should
not expect privacy when they allow an outside party to store their messages, prosecutors
argue. In fact, many e-mail providers require their customers to sign agreements
acknowledging that the provider may release customer information as required by law.

-snip-

Full article: http://www.startribune.com/789/story/884388.html
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BOSSHOG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-27-06 02:44 PM
Response to Original message
1. Should a "Mail" user
expect privacy when they allow an outside source (lets say the Post Office) to store their mail before it is delivered?
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Solo_in_MD Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-27-06 08:37 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Espcially if its not encrypted...
Email is the equivalent of a post card without PGP or better encryption.

I would like to see the Gov try and read my personal email <grin>
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