The user data of Megaupload, one of the world's leading file-sharing Web sites before it was shut down, won't be deleted at least for two weeks from now.
Megaupload was shut down by the U.S. government on Jan. 19, and its founder Kim Dotcom and other executives were arrested and charged with copyright infringement and other felonies.
According to a letter, which was filed in the court last Friday by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia, Megaupload user data might get deleted beginning this Thursday.
The execution of those search warrants [on the servers] has now been completed, the government letter said. The government has copied some selected data from the servers but did not physically remove them from the premises.
The servers are controlled by hosting companies Carpathia Hosting Inc. and Cogent Communications Group Inc., and issues about the future of the data must be resolved with them, the prosecutors said.
The data belongs to at least 50 million Megaupload users, including those who have uploaded legitimate, non-infringing content such as their family photos and personal documents. Ever since the crackdown, they couldn't access it.
However, the crisis has now been averted. Megaupload lawyer Ira Rothken tweeted on Monday, saying, Carpathia and Cogent agreed to preserve consumer data for additional time of at least two weeks so #Megaupload can work with US on proposal.
Meanwhile, the third-party hosting company Carpathia has released a statement about Megaupload’s user data.
In reference to the letter filed by the U.S. Department of Justice with the Eastern District of Virginia on Jan. 27, 2012, Carpathia Hosting does not have, and has never had, access to the content on MegaUpload servers and has no mechanism for returning any content residing on such servers to MegaUpload’s customers.
The reference to the Feb. 2, 2012 date in the Department of Justice letter for the deletion of content is not based on any information provided by Carpathia to the U.S. Government. We would recommend that anyone who believes that they have content on MegaUpload servers contact MegaUpload. Please do not contact Carpathia Hosting, the statement read.