The US Government has continued its dogged attempts to get Microsoft to turn over data held on their servers overseas, despite an 8 judge panel earlier this year finding in favour of Microsoft's assertion that the US Government does not have jurisdiction overseas, and that prosecutors and investigators should go through normal "mutual legal assistance requests" channels to request access data of interest held in other countries.
As a reminder, in 2013 a NY district judge ordered Microsoft to provide the personal details of a customer undergoing an investigation.
Microsoft's position was supported by Amazon, Apple, Mozilla, CNN, Fox News Network and Verizon Communications, as well as the American Civil Liberties Union and US Chamber of Commerce.
At both the House and Senate hearings, United Kingdom Deputy National Security Adviser Paddy McGuinness argued that the US needed to ease restrictions on domestic data as well. A lower court had ruled that it was not - that law enforcement agencies would have to follow the same rules to obtain extraterritorial data as it would with physical evidence and seek the cooperation of a foreign government. We think the legislative path is better for the country too.
"I look forward to getting out some legislation before the end of the year", Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Ted Cruz of Texas, have said they anticipate a new vacancy on the court within the next few months. "It's very important for our national security".
Also, GOP members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, including Sens. "Who's law do they violate?" He told lawmakers that Microsoft first challenged whether the U.S. had the right to overseas data in 2013. In the context of this Union-wide Regulation, it is "illegal for a company to bring customer data from Europe into the U.S.in response to a unilateral US search warrant".
"These concerns led to our lawsuit", he said.
U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy is seen during a ceremony in the Rose Garden at the White House April 10, 2017, in Washington, D.C. Earlier in the day Gorsuch, 49, was sworn in as the 113th associate justice in a private ceremony at the Supreme Court.
Microsoft's top lawyer, Brad Smith, pushed back strongly against the government's argument in a blog post Friday.
The government balked at the assertion.
While a Republican appointment, Justice Kennedy has proven the most unreliable swing vote for conservatives. The nationality of the person concerned has not been disclosed.
Following Microsoft's lead, there are more than 100 active cases in the United States in which the tech sector is challenging whether the U.S. government, even with valid warrants, can reach into their foreign servers. Some cases not under seal were brought by Google and Yahoo.
Under ECPA - passed in 1986 - the government can subpoena USA companies' business records after they're 180-days old. What matters is whether the company can access that data in the US.
So the opportunity for Donald Trump to replace him with a more reliable - and predictable - conservative could tilt constitutional law to the right on a broad range of issues.