Mega, the cloud storage site founded by Kim Dotcom, has been ordered to hand the IP addresses and personal details of some of its users to a U.S. court. The ruling follows the uploading of sensitive documents to Mega following a hack on a foreign government computer system. Speaking with TorrentFreak, Mega chairman Stephen Hall expressed concerns over the process.
mega_logoWhen Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom launched his new Mega cloud-storage company in January 2013, the company was focused on one key issue – privacy.
Mega encrypts all files uploaded by users, meaning that no one other than the uploader can see what is in those files unless he or she shares their private key with a third party. But while Mega is secure in many respects, users can not expect complete anonymity.
From the start Mega made it clear it would carry communication logs, the IP addresses used by subscribers to access the service, and other personal information.
Nevertheless, although Dotcom is no longer part of the company (his current stance is actually one of hostility), Mega’s commitment to privacy has been maintained by its current operators. Just recently, however, their stance of keeping user information private has been challenged in court.
The case involves a hack on a Kazakhstan government computer system which is said to have taken place in August 2014 but was not unearthed until 2015.
According to the Kazakh authorities the hackers made off with a trove of information including thousands of sensitive documents and emails between the government and advisors in the United States. These were then uploaded and stored on Mega by either the hackers or individuals closely linked to them.
In order to begin tracking the hackers down, in May last year Kazakhstan filed a lawsuit in the United States against 100 unnamed “John Does” seeking an injunction and damages. The EFF became involved in the case after the Kazakhstan government tried to stop Respublika, a site which reports critically on Kazakhstan’s ruling regime, from publishing the leaks.