WASHINGTON – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to resolve a major privacy dispute between the Justice Department and Microsoft Corp over whether prosecutors should get access to emails stored on company servers overseas. The justices will hear the Trump administration's appeal of a lower court's ruling last year preventing federal prosecutors from obtaining emails stored in Microsoft computer servers in Dublin in a drug trafficking investigation. That decision by the New York-based 2nd U.S. Court of Appeals marked a victory for privacy advocates and technology companies that increasingly offer cloud computing services in which data are stored remotely. Prosecutors say a ruling in favor of Microsoft could undermine a range of criminal investigations. Microsoft, which has 100 data centers in 40 countries, was the first U.S. company to challenge a domestic search warrant seeking data held outside the country.
Microsoft has won an appeal over US search warrant that aimed to force the company to turn over data it stored overseas. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York reversed the decision in a 63-page decision on Thursday. How Microsoft's data case could unravel the US tech industry The case, if lost, could see a mass exodus of international customers from the US cloud. The case centered on a uniquely-different warrant that was issued by US prosectors in that it was for data stored in an email account stored by Microsoft overseas. Prosecutors said that because the data was hosted by a US-based company, Microsoft must comply.
Many new PCs used to come with Microsoft Office pre-installed. SAN FRANCISCO -- In a ruling that could have important data security implications, a court ruled Thursday that Microsoft can't be forced to give the government e-mails stored in Ireland even though they're part of a U.S. drug investigation. "This is an an incredibly important ruling, one of the most important in a long time," said Craig Newman, who heads the data privacy practice at the New York law firm Patterson Belknap. The case dates back to 2013, when U.S. prosecutors demanded that Microsoft turn over emails linked to a drug-trafficking case. The emails were stored only on Microsoft servers in Dublin.