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Friday, March 28, 2014
Microsoft Says It Won't Search Users' Emails For Stolen Property

Microsoft has changed its privacy policy in the wake of a recent email scandal that saw the company searching through a French blogger's hotmail account in search of leaked company property.

According to Brad Smith, general counsel, Microsoft, the company would no longer inspect its customers' private content even if ther is information indicating that someone was using Microsoft's services to traffic in stolen intellectual or physical property from Microsoft. Instead, Smith says Microsoft will refer the matter to law enforcement.

The statement goes beyond a previous statement made last week, which only stated that the company would "comply with the standards applicable to obtaining a court order" when searching user content.

"It?s always uncomfortable to listen to criticism. But if one can step back a bit, it?s often thought-provoking and even helpful. That was definitely the case for us over the past week. Although our terms of service, like those of others in our industry, allowed us to access lawfully the account in this case, the circumstances raised legitimate questions about the privacy interests of our customers," Smith added.

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