Apple obtained the subpoena from the Justice Division on Feb. 6, 2018, but it surely contained no details about who the investigation was focusing on or why, the corporate mentioned. Apple additionally mentioned figuring out who the focused accounts belonged to would have required intensive analysis.
Apple mentioned it restricted the knowledge it supplied to metadata and account subscriber data and didn’t present any content material akin to emails or photos. Whereas Apple says it could have usually knowledgeable prospects, a nondisclosure order prevented it from doing so on this case, the corporate mentioned.
The nondisclosure order was prolonged 3 times, every time for a yr, Apple mentioned. When it was not prolonged for a fourth time, Apple mentioned it knowledgeable the affected prospects on Might 5, 2021.
“On this case, the subpoena, which was issued by a federal grand jury and included a nondisclosure order signed by a federal Justice of the Peace decide, supplied no data on the character of the investigation and it could have been just about inconceivable for Apple to grasp the intent of the specified data with out digging by way of customers’ accounts,” Apple mentioned within the assertion. “In step with the request, Apple restricted the knowledge it supplied to account subscriber data and didn’t present any content material akin to emails or photos.”
The subpoena was signed by prosecutor Jocelyn Valentine and approved by Justice of the Peace Choose Deborah Robinson in DC federal court docket, the supply accustomed to the request mentioned.
The corporate additionally says it believes comparable requests have been despatched to different know-how firms and web service suppliers.
Microsoft obtained subpoena for congressional staffer
Microsoft obtained a subpoena in 2017 associated to a congressional staffer’s private electronic mail account, the corporate mentioned Friday night.
As with the subpoena despatched to Apple, Microsoft was topic to a gag order, an organization spokesperson mentioned. The gag order was in impact for greater than two years.
After Microsoft notified the account holder of the subpoena, that particular person contacted Microsoft informing the corporate of their standing as a congressional staffer, Microsoft mentioned.
“In 2017 Microsoft obtained a subpoena associated to a private electronic mail account,” the assertion mentioned. “As we have mentioned earlier than, we imagine prospects have a constitutional proper to know when the federal government requests their electronic mail or paperwork, and we have now a proper to inform them. On this case, we have been prevented from notifying the client for greater than two years due to a gag order. As quickly because the gag order expired, we notified the client who informed us they have been a congressional staffer. We then supplied a briefing to the consultant’s workers following that discover. We’ll proceed to aggressively search reform that imposes cheap limits on authorities secrecy in instances like this.”