In addition to the email search, Microsoft also snooped into the instant messages that were exchanged between the employee and the blogger. Reuters

Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) is challenging the federal government’s power to demand that the company turn over customers’ email stored at an Irish data center and more companies are expected to align with the company to fight growing federal demands.

In court filings made public on Monday, Microsoft argued that if the government’s demands are enforced it “would violate international law and treaties, and reduce the privacy protection of everyone on the planet,” the New York Times reported Wednesday.

Microsoft has already lost one round in the fight after arguing unsuccessfully two months ago, the Times said, adding that foreign search warrants are rare.

“United States search warrants do not have extraterritorial reach," Lee Tien, a senior staff attorney with the San Francisco-based nonprofit Electronic Frontier Foundation, which defends civil liberties in the digital world, told the newspaper. "The government is trying to do an end run.”