Internet Archive, et al., v. Micheal B. Mukasey, et al.

Order to Unseal Case

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In December 2007, the Internet Archive, along with its counsel the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), filed a lawsuit challenging a national security letter issued to the Archive. (Internet Archive, et al v Mukasey et al, No. 07-6346-CW (N.D. Cal)). The lawsuit was filed under seal due to the strict non-disclosure rules imposed by the national security letter authority. In April 2008, the government formally withdrew the unconstitutional letter and settled the case, and on May 5, 2008 the Court unsealed the case, allowing this story to become public for the first time.

In the lawsuit, the Archive challenged the constitutionality of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)'s authority to impose broad and effectively permanent non-disclosure obligations on those served with NSLs. The lawsuit also challenged the FBI’s authority to issue the NSL to the Internet Archive. The NSL improperly demanded information the FBI was not entitled to obtain because the Archive is a library that is not subject to NSLs since the activity at issue was not the provision of an electronic communication service. The Archive is protected by 18 U.S.C. 2709(f), a 2006 amendment Congress made to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act to limit the FBI's ability to demand records from libraries.

This is the Court's Order to Unseal the Case.

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Reference Info:Decision | Federal, 9th Circuit, California | United States


DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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