A Washington judge, D.C., has severely restricted the Justice Department’s warrant for a website used to plan protests against triumph during imitation.
The government sought a comprehensive arrest warrant against the Dream Host web hosting company from all visitors to its clients’ website, DisruptJ20.org, including those who were not suspected of having committed a crime. As NPR previously reported, Dream Host opposed compliance with this arrest warrant, as it was too broad, compromising privacy and freedom of expression.
“The government has the right to enforce its arrest warrant,” Judge Robert Morin wrote in his decision, “he has no right to dig into the information contained on the Dream Host website and the identity of access to communications from persons who are not participating in alleged criminal activities, in particular the persons involved in First’s protected activities. ”
The government requested the arrest warrant because it gathered evidence of its allegations against almost 200 people accused of rioting on January 20.
The new judge’s statement instructs Dream Host to correct identifying information for “innocent people” who have visited the site before government documentation becomes available. It also draws up a protocol for the inclusion of procedural safeguards in order to comply with the considerations of “Recent First” and “New Recent”. The government must submit to the court, among other things, the plan to permanently remove all information that is not within the scope of the warrant.
Dream Host celebrated the judge’s verdict for a big win
“The new order is far from the original warrant, which we received in July,” DreamHost CEO Christopher Ghazarian wrote in a statement to NPR. “If the Court does not establish that there is a probable cause of criminal activity, the government will not be able to disclose the identity of these users, and there are also some modifications that may affect the government’s ability to verify unrelated data,” This is a great benefit not just for Dream Host, but for Internet users around the world. ”
The company says that it does not intend to appeal against the judgment of the Court of First Instance.
“In today’s world, the amount of data requested in this case is very much in line with hundreds of government applications that Dream Host has historically maintained and respected,” said Brett Dunst, vice president of corporate communications at Dream Host.