What Will AOL And MSN Tell Uncle Sam?

Steve Schear schear at attbi.com
Wed Nov 27 19:40:43 PST 2002

Business In The Beltway
What Will AOL And MSN Tell Uncle Sam?
Matthew Swibel, 11.27.02, 9:05 AM ET

WASHINGTON - When he signed the Homeland Security bill on Monday, President 
George W. Bush effectively drafted corporate America to serve in the war 
against terrorism--with Internet service providers among those on the front 

The new law makes it easier for AOL Time Warner, Comcast, Microsoft's MSN 
unit, United Online and the rest of the nation's 3,000 Internet service 
providers to volunteer subscriber information to government officials 
without worrying about customer lawsuits. Under the new law, they can 
release the contents of customers' communications to law enforcement 
without a court order and without fear of a suit if they have a 
"good-faith" belief that an emergency warrants it. Before, they had to have 
a "reasonable" belief--a higher legal standard--that release was warranted.


"When the people fear their government, there is tyranny;
when the government fears the people, there is liberty "
--- Thomas Jefferson

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