Kim Dotcom: Megaupload User Information Erased in ‘Data Massacre’
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai, courtesy mashable
On Wednesday, Kim Dotcom revealed that a large amount of user data was wiped from his old and controversial file-sharing service Megaupload by hosting provider LeaseWeb. In classic Dotcom fashion, he broke the news on Twitter.In what he defined as “the largest data massacre in the history of the Internet,” Dotcom lamented that millions of personal files, especialy pertaining to European Megaupload users, were “forever destroyed by LeaseWeb’s decision to delete.”Although the news of the data wipeout broke on Wednesday, LeaseWeb actually erased the data on Feb. 1. Dotcom, who claimed he was not notified until Wednesday, also said the company never told him they intended to delete the data.But LeaseWeb had a different story.In a statement posted on the company’s blog, Alex de Joode, LeaseWeb’s senior regulatory counsel, wrote that Megaupload still had 630 dedicated servers containing user data, which were maintained at LeaseWeb’s cost since Megaupload was shut down last year. Moreover, the blog post stated that when LeaseWeb asked Megaupload whether it should keep the data on those servers, they never received a response.”So for over one whole year LeaseWeb kept 630 servers available, without any request to do so and without any compensation,” de Joode wrote. “After a year of nobody showing any interest in the servers and data we considered our options. We did inform Megaupload about our decision to re-provision the servers.”
Dotcom begged to differ. He tweeted that his lawyers — as well as the advocacy group Electronic Frontier Foundation — had been asking the hosting provider to save the data for more than a year. Dotcom also argued that the data deleted aided the U.S. in his battle against extradition, as the servers may have contained exculpatory information.
Ultimately, Dotcom showed solidarity with the users who lost their data.
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