Department of Justice Settles with Google over BTC-e Data

The case of the US Department of Justice versus Google has been settled, as per the latest media news. The matter was related to the objection of the legal authority of the US about deleting the data concerning BTC-e. Google was required by DoJ to submit the required data to the court of law in lieu of discovery.

For those who are uninitiated on the matter, BTC-e is a notorious cryptocurrency exchange where around 800,000 Bitcoins are stored. However, the massive amount of Bitcoin is not an enterprise reserve, but it is connected to the hack of Mt. Gox hack incident.

Congress has Passed Cloud Act that Requires Google to Hand Over Data to US Authorities

As per the tenets of the Cloud Act, Google has been under obligation to hand over all data resources to law enforcement authorities. However, as per Google, in the case of BTC-e, a user mysteriously removed all related data history.

Furthermore, the legal statement by Google lawyers submitted to the court that on account of issues with Google tools, an unknown user was able to delete the required data.

Google attorneys and technical team have also presented technical reasons for not extending their data preservation tools to photographs.

However, despite the direct breach of the DoJ warrant, Google has managed to get out without facing any financial or legal penalties. BTC-e was taken out of commission in 2017 as a result of clashes between Mark Karpeles and Alexander Vinnik.

The purported founder of BTC-e Vinnik was arrested in Greece. He was facing charges by Karpeles for stealing billions of dollar worth of Bitcoins from Mt. Gox. Vinnik is still present in prison inside the United States.

In addition to Bitcoin theft, BTC-e is also connected to the leak of sensitive FinCen files that were stolen and made public in September 2020.

However, several tech experts are raising questions on whether Google has managed to deflect any penalties from DoJ.

On the other hand, Google authorities have maintained that an unknown user has managed to remove all the details despite the legal warrant to present the information. Therefore, the case has been shut down on account of a lack of evidence.

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