A small but important victory for privacy.In a two-page brief filed Friday, the Obama administration withdrew its request for warrantless access to the complete contents of the Yahoo Mail accounts under investigation. CNET was the first to report on the Denver case in an article on Tuesday.
Yahoo's efforts to fend off federal prosecutors' broad request attracted allies--in the form of Google, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and the Progress and Freedom Foundation--who argued (PDF) that Americans who keep their e-mail in the cloud enjoy a reasonable expectation of privacy that is protected by the U.S. Constitution.
Two years ago, then-presidential candidate Barack Obama had pledged that, as president, he would "strengthen privacy protections for the digital age." This dispute had the potential to test his administration's actual commitment to privacy, which recently became the subject of a legislative push supported by Silicon Valley firms and privacy advocates. The administration has taken a position at odds with that coalition in a second case in Philadelphia involving warrantless tracking of cell phones.
DOJ abandons warrantless attempt to read Yahoo e-mail | Politics and Law - CNET News