A large number of the servers used by Megaupload during its operation to store the data of its customers, have been wiped out by Netherlandic firm, Leaseweb, in a move it said, was to help free up space after it received no interest from either Dotcom or authorities to examine the data held within.
While the data wiping actually happened back in February this year, it was only late yesterday that Megaupload founder, Kim Dotcom, broke the news via Twitter: “VERY BAD NEWS: #Leaseweb has wiped ALL #Megaupload servers. All user data & crucial evidence for our defense destroyed “without warning”.
He went on to lambaste Leaseweb for the move, stating that he was “in tears” over the fact that most European Megaupload user’s data was irretrievably lost. Fortunately for some, data stored with US firms is still secure and of course, there’s still a large number of servers under quarantine with the US authorities.
Leaseweb attempted to counter the bad press heading its way, by suggesting that it had contacted Megaupload about the potential data wipe. Dotcom was adamant that he had never heard from them and neither had any member of his legal team. This makes sense, as there’s no way Dotcom would have kept quiet about such a move. Without that data, Dotcom has lost a lot of evidence that shows his service was about more than just copyright infringement.
“This is the largest data massacre in the history of the Internet caused by the U.S. government, the Department of Justice & #Leaseweb,” said Dotcom in a later tweet. He also said that while this was only a portion of Megauploads files, it represents several “petabytes of pictures, backups, personal and business property.”
Dotcom went on to say that at points, he and his team had attempted to have funds released from the US Department of Justice, so that he could buy back all the servers from the leasing companies to protect the data. The request was refused.
If any of you feel like complaining directly to Leaseweb, you can do so here.
KitGuru Says: This is a rough one for everyone involved. Users have lost mountains of their own data and Dotcom has lost a lot of evidence in his favour. Leaseweb understandably doesn’t want to keep paying to have servers sitting around, but was it within its rights to delete the data on them? That data wasn’t its property, it was the property of Megaupload users.