Report: MegaUpload Data Could Disappear Forever Thursday

Federal prosecutors have told the Associated Press that data from MegaUpload could be deleted as soon as Thursday, according to a report in CBS. This is particularly bad news for anyone that was using the service to back up files. Contrary to popular belief MegaUpload was used for other things besides sharing illegal files…

According to the AP, a letter filed last Friday in the MegaUpload piracy case from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia revealed that Carpathia Hosting and Cogent Communications Group (two companies MegaUpload hired to store data) may begin deleting that data come Thursday.

Assets and bank accounts held by MegaUpload assets have been seized by the government, making it so that the two storage companies won't be paid. Since they aren't being paid, it is their policy to delete storage files.

The government went on to say that it has copied some data from servers but hadn't physically taken possession of the servers. They add that – because the original search warrants have been executed – the remaining data cannot be accessed legally.

MegaUpload was taken offline January 19 and its founder – along with several of his associates – were arrested and charged with various crimes related to online piracy.

The millions of people online who used the service may have to live with the fact that their data is permanently lost.

MegaUpload attorney Ira Rothken told the AP that at least 50 million MegaUpload users could see their data wiped out. He says that he is working with prosecutors to try to prevent the data from being lost forever.

"We're cautiously optimistic at this point that–because the United States, as well as MegaUpload, should have a common desire to protect consumers–this type of agreement will get done," Rothken told the AP. He also said the threatened data could be important for MegaUpload's defense.

Source: C|Net. Image Credit: MegaUpload

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  1. 0
    DorthLous says:

    So, in the hypothetical case (under which the US justice is suppose to run, btw) that they are found fully innocent, does that mean that the US will have destroyed an unmeasurable amount of data and cost them untold sums? Why even bother proving him guilty passed the deletion of the data, he'll already be ruined and his business with him.

  2. 0
    hellfire7885 says:

    Giving how late I came into some games, like with Garry's mod, this will be especially frustrating to me.

    I mean I already run into too many dead mods for New Vegas.

  3. 0
    GoodRobotUs says:

    Sad thing is, for many people who play X3: Terran Conflict, they have lost a vast repository of legal, Egosoft accepted, scripts for the game, since MU was a commonly used storage point for the scripting community. All that work and effort has been seriously damaged and will take considerable time to repair, and since some of those modders have now left the community for other things, some of it will never, ever be restored.

    I will stress that these were part of the community of the Egosoft Forums, and they were encouraged and helped to develop those plugins by Egosoft themselves, not some fly by night 'hackers', but apparently, people who don't break the law don't count as the dot above the letter 'i' in the word 'shit'

    Also, if MegaUpload is housing all this pirated software, why are they rushing to delete the data, rather than searching through it for evidence?

  4. 0
    GoodRobotUs says:

    True, but they also suggested that if we want to get our data back, we get in contact with the host. Problem is, they forgot to mention this to the host themselves, and there are no backups of the data. So, effectively, they've washed their hands of the problem, and actually seem pretty pleased about the destruction of what probably adds up to millions of hours worth of legal, and often privately owned creative content.

    I'm against piracy, but MegaUpload closing down will affect Mod developers and similar groups far more emphatically than it will Pirates, who will simply diversify, and always adapt to fill a niche. It simply cannot be healthy for the development of creativity in the American market to create a situation where you are afraid to be innovative, or to share that innovation, for fear that you will be swept up in something that is nothing to do with you and have your work removed at some point in the future in some kind of blunderbuss attitude towards online file-sharing.

    Whilst I do understand where you are coming from, that the deletion was not requested, I suppose I find myself amazed, and a bit appalled, that there seems to be a level of satisfaction expressed by the prosecutors for the idea that all this creative content may be lost. It strikes me as odd that a country that prides itself on its creative ability should suddenly start to think that destroying peoples work to catch a few criminals is an acceptable way of encouraging that in the future.

  5. 0
    Mr.Tastix says:

    Aside from the fact that this does absolutely nothing to the piracy industry as a whole, this is the typical case of "punish everyone because of one bad egg". It happens everywhere, and it's a completely knee-jerk and pathetic course of action.

  6. 0
    GoodRobotUs says:

    Guilty until proven innocent and throwing out the baby with the bath water…

    How much longer is the Federal Government going to ignore the ideals it is supposed to be upholding? Apparently, "harming the many to punish the few" is no longer cruel and unusual punishment, but rather a policy statement.

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