Microsoft To Cease Inspecting Customer Accounts For Illegal Content

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Posted 3 years ago


Microsoft To Cease Inspecting Customer Accounts For Illegal Content

Microsoft will stop their practice of searching through customer accounts for illegal content; instead, turning over the keys of accounts suspected of illegal to law enforcement.

This news is in direct response to the recent story of Microsoft searching through user accounts for information Microsoft wanted, for reasons both known, and unknown.

Brad Smith, General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs at Microsoft, had this to say in a blog post:

“Last Thursday, news coverage focused on a case in 2012 in which our investigators accessed the Hotmail content of a user who was trafficking in stolen Microsoft source code. Over the past week, we’ve had the opportunity to reflect further on this issue, and as a result of conversations we’ve had internally and with advocacy groups and other experts, we’ve decided to take an additional step and make an important change to our privacy practices.”

Smith added “Effective immediately, if we receive information indicating that someone is using our services to traffic in stolen intellectual or physical property from Microsoft, we will not inspect a customer’s private content ourselves. Instead, we will refer the matter to law enforcement if further action is required.”

And it will be added to Microsoft’s terms of service “so that it’s clear to consumers and binding on Microsoft.” said Smith.

So instead of Microsoft snooping your email, they’ll turn that job over to law enforcement, who have shown they are quite capable in the snooping department.


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