Enjoy the Irony: WikiLeaks Is Mad That Google Handed Their Emails Over to the FBI
WikiLeaks is not a fan of leaking information to the goverment.
WikiLeaks, which has kind of a habit of making secret information publicly available, is pretty upset that Google gave in to a Department of Justice order to hand over data including emails and IP addresses associated with several WikiLeaks staff members. Who could blame them? No one likes to be on the receiving end of that level of irony.
The main thing that WikiLeaks is so upset about, though, is the speed with which Google let them know about the warrants. They were apparently required to give up the information in 2012, but they didn’t inform WikiLeaks until Christmas Eve 2014. A letter from WikiLeaks’ lawyer to Google’s Eric Schmidt says that they’re “astonished and disturbed that Google waited over two and a half years to notify subscribers that a warrant was issued for their records.”
For Google’s part, their notification to WikiLeaks about the data request reportedly mentioned that they’d been under a gag order and couldn’t legally notify WikiLeaks sooner. Google is generally defensive about sharing its users’ data with the government, so it’s a good bet they did their best to make sure there was legitimate legal cause for the warrants, but WikiLeaks’ letter further argues that Twitter has already had success in arguing against handing over WikiLeaks’ staff data and that Google could’ve at least done the same.
In that case, WikiLeaks’ three staff members involved in the data request, Sarah Harrison, Kristinn Hrafnsson, and Joseph Farrell, would’ve been able to mount their own legal defense of their privacy instead of the question of the warrants’ legitimacy being left up to Google alone. Google has yet to respond to WikiLeaks’ demands the company immediately divulge all information about the warrants including exactly what data was given and the specifics of just what kind of fight Google put up before handing over the data.
Always remember, kids: Don’t write anything down that you wouldn’t want published
by WikiLeaks in the newspaper.
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