Stocksak: Google agrees To Compliance Reforms To Prevent Search Warrant Data Loss


© Stocksak. FILE PHOTO – The logo of Google LLC can be seen at the Google Store Chelsea, New York City, U.S.A, November 17, 2021. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly


By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON, (Stocksak) -The U.S. Justice Department announced on Tuesday that it had reached an accord with Alphabet (NASDAQ) Inc’s Google to resolve a dispute with the search giant over the loss data responsive for a 2016 search warrant.

According to the government, it was a “first of its kind resolution” that would see Google reforming its legal process compliance program to ensure timely response to legal process such subpoenas or search warrants.

“The department is committed to ensuring that electronic communications providers comply with court orders to protect and facilitate criminal investigations,” said Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Polite, who heads the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.

The settlement demonstrated the department’s “resolve in ensuring that technology companies, such as Google, provide prompt and complete responses to legal process to ensure public safety and bring offenders to justice,” he added.

Google said it had a “long track record of protecting our users’ privacy, including pushing back against overbroad government demands for user data, and this agreement in no way changes our ability or our commitment to continue doing so.”

A U.S. court was told by the company that it had spent more than $90 million on additional resources, systems, staffing, and personnel to improve legal process compliance programs.

The Justice Department said an independent compliance professional will be hired to serve as an outside third party related to Google’s compliance upgrades.

The department stated that the United States obtained a California search warrant in 2016 for data held by Google. This was to assist with the investigation into the criminal cryptocurrency exchange BTCe.

The Second Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that search warrants issued under Stored Communications Act (SCA), did not cover data outside the United States.

2018: Congress clarified that the SCA covered U.S. providers who stored data overseas. However, the government stated that “in the intervening period, data responsive to warrant was lost”, the Justice Department stated.

Google will compile reports on compliance programs and update them to go to the government and Alphabet board members.

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Stocksak Editorial

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