US v. Microsoft: Searching a Server Abroad and Domestic Warrants

By Dennis Crouch

In United States v. Microsoft, the Supreme Courtroom is asked to identify the scope of US extraterritorial police powers. Back in 2013, the Federal Government served a warrant on Microsoft in search of e mail information of 1 of its consumers who was a suspected drug trafficker. Microsoft refused to comply because the emails had been stored in Eire. While related to the Fourth Modification, the question presented to the court docket centers on the scope of the Saved Communications Act – and irrespective of whether warrants issued less than 18 U.S.C. § 2703 can compel a US entity to retrieve and produce elements stored overseas. Microsoft argues that the FBI must go via Irish protocol to get the information and facts stored in Eire. The case could have some naturally significant impression on corporate disclosures overseas.

We may well talk about liberty and independence, but Microsoft’s situation listed here is that a key way for US Citizens to keep secrecy is to use international servers. Of system, number of individuals know the area of the clouds where by their information and facts is stored. Below, it was just favorable tax law and a enjoy for green that led to Microsoft’s Irish servers. A far more apt question may well be irrespective of whether Microsoft should consider motion in Eire or can the retrieval be entirely managed from the US.

An viewpoint must be out by mid-June.


Dennis Crouch

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