Lawfare: Mueller’s Indictment of Russian Hackers Highlights Stakes of Microsoft Case

Since the 9/11 attacks on New York City and Washington, DC, in 2001, the United States developed sophisticated surveillance techniques. Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicted 13 Russians and three Russian organizations for interfering in the 2016 presidential elections, describing elaborate efforts to avoid detection including virtual private networks and US travel to set up servers and accounts. “Mueller’s investigation into foreign elections depends on access to data across borders – an issue that will be heard by the Supreme Court on Feb 27,” explains Andrew Keane Woods for Lawfare. The US Supreme Court will hear United States v. Microsoft Ireland to decide “whether a warrant issued under the Stored Communications Act compels a U.S. provider to produce emails stored in the company’s Irish data center,” or for that matter other data held overseas whether for election meddling or terrorism. Wood speculates that investigators compelled social-media companies like Twitter or Facebook to hand over suspect accounts, and he points out that providers can detect when users rely on VPNs to mask locations and that major providers often transfer data around the globe. He concludes that “access to data across borders is critical for solving not just crimes, but perhaps some of the most consequential crimes of our era.” – YaleGlobal

Lawfare: Mueller’s Indictment of Russian Hackers Highlights Stakes of Microsoft Case

Sophisticated cross-border surveillance techniques were likely used by US investigators to find and indict 13 Russian nationals and three organizations
Andrew Keane Woods
Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Read the article from Lawfare.

Andrew Keane Woods is an assistant professor at the University of Kentucky College of Law. In his previous position, he was a postdoctoral cybersecurity fellow at Stanford University. He holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School and a Ph.D. in Politics from the University of Cambridge, where he was a Gates Scholar.

© 2018 The Lawfare Institute

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