Microsoft wants to tell users when the government is reading their data

Brad Stephenson

Microsoft is heading to court this month to fight the Department of Justice for the right to inform users of when the U.S. government has requested private user data according to a report by GeekTime.

Currently, it is legal for government organizations to obtain user data from companies and demand that such investigations be kept confidential. Microsoft is going to argue that digital files should be given the same protections against unlawful search and seizure as their physical real-world counterparts.

Microsoft’s complaint states that the “statute violates both the Fourth Amendment, which affords people and businesses the right to know if the government searches or seizes their property, and the First Amendment, which enshrines Microsoft’s rights to talk to its customers and to discuss how the government conducts its investigations—subject only to restraints narrowly tailored to serve compelling government interests. People do not give up their rights when they move their private information from physical storage to the cloud.”

Microsoft is no stranger to the courtroom. The tech giant recently went up against the U.S. government to protect user data stored on an Irish data center and more recently was instructed by the Supreme Court of India to change its Bing search results and make some Windows 10 security changes after an investigation by the Swiss Federal Data Protection and Information Commission.

Whose side are you on in this argument? Let us know in the comments below.