Microsoft Sues US Government
Computer technology company Microsoft has brought a legal case against the U.S. government.
Microsoft says a law that permits agencies to demand to read emails or online files without their owners' knowledge violates the Constitution.
The Reuters news agency reports that the company believes the government's actions violate the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution. That amendment bans "unreasonable searches and seizures."
Reuters also reports that Microsoft says the law violates the company's First Amendment right to free speech.
The law in question is the Electronics Communications Privacy Act of 1986. It permits government investigators to examine emails and other electronic files without telling the owners of the documents. In most cases, a judge must give the investigators permission to do so.
Microsoft says the law was written before distant computer data storage centers, known as the cloud, were developed.
Microsoft is a major operator of cloud storage for computers. It says the government is using the new technology to increase its power.
The Justice Department says it is studying the lawsuit. Daniel Rosenthal is a former U.S. attorney. He told the Associated Press news agency that forcing the government to tell the owners of files that they are being examined could hurt law enforcement efforts. He says doing so would let "child molesters, domestic abusers, violent criminals and terrorists" know that their emails and files are being read.
Microsoft Vice President and General Counsel Brad Smith said he understands that there are times when it is important not to tell people their files are being read. But he said "people should not lose their right(s) just because they are storing their information in the cloud."
Microsoft says it received more than 5,600 federal demands for access to files between September 2014 and March 2015. It says more than half of the requests did not permit the company to tell the owners of the files that their information was being read.
I'm Christopher Jones-Cruise.
1.computer technology 计算机技术
Japan lags U.S.A. in developing computer technology.
2.free speech 言论自由
He' s a fervent believer in free speech.
3.in question 在讨论中的
The speech in question was a five-minute party political broadcast.
4.access to 接近；通向...的入口
Segregation has always blocked equal access to education.
1.In most cases, a judge must give the investigators permission to do so.
In most cases 多数情况下
In most cases, they are just metal or plastic boxes.
In most cases, they'll find your luggage.
2.Microsoft says the law was written before distant computer data storage centers, known as the cloud, were developed.
known as 被认为是；被称为
He is known as a gifted orator.
The study was known as Project Anehin.
路透社报道称，微软公司认为政府的行为违反了美国宪法第四修正案 。该修正案明令禁止“无故搜查及扣押” 。
这部备受争议的法律是1986年颁布的《电子通信隐私法案》 。法案允许政府搜查人员在不知会文件主人的情况下可查阅其电子邮件等其它电子文件 。多数情况下，调查人员须得到法官授权后才能这样做 。
微软是计算机云存储的主要运营商 。该公司表示，政府正利用新项技术扩大自己的权力 。
美国司法部表示称正在研究这起诉讼 。前美国律师丹尼尔·罗森塔尔（Daniel Rosenthal）对美联社表示，如果政府知会文件主人其正被调查会影响执法工作 。他还说，这样做会让“儿童性骚扰者、家庭暴力施暴者、暴力罪犯和恐怖分子”知道他们的邮件或文件正在被审查 。
微软副总裁兼法律总顾问布拉德·史密斯（ Brad Smith）表示，有时候在文件主人不知情的情况下审阅文件非常重要 。但是他坚持，“人们不能因为把信息存储至云端而失去知情权” 。
微软表示2014年9月到2015年3月期间，公司共收到联邦政府5600份访问资料的要求 。微软表示，其中多半请求不允许知会文件主人其信息正被审阅一事 。