Feeds

Dutch court orders Google to reveal Gmail user

Secret mails auto-forwarded

The essential guide to IT transformation

Google Netherlands has agreed to hand over the IP addresses of a Gmail user in an alleged spy case.

The CEO of Dutch internet incubator company iMerge suspected that a former disgruntled employee, who also acted as a system administrator, had secretly created an auto-forward rule in one of the company's mail servers. Several mails, including business conversations and a romantic discourse which led to a divorce, were forwarded to a Gmail address.

Because Gmail doesn't reveal someone's IP address in outgoing mail headers, iMerge couldn't take legal action against the former employee.

Google initially declined to provide iMerge with requested IP addresses on the grounds that "disclosing the user's identity violated rulings on the balance between freedom of expression and a person's right to his reputation."

However, a Dutch court believed the offence was serious enough and forced Google to reveal all the log files it had on the account. Immediately after the ruling, Google provided the required data, including a list of IP addresses.

Last year, Google would not hand over the IP address of an anonymous blogger who slandered Shaarei Tikva councilmen. When a Israeli judge ruled that the blog's content raised suspicions of criminal conduct, Google rolled over.

In July, Google was told cough up the personal data of every person who has ever watched a Viacom video on the YouTube website as part of a billion-dollar court case. Digital rights group the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) called the ruling a "set-back to privacy rights." ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
GCHQ protesters stick it to British spooks ... by drinking urine
Activists told NOT to snap pics of staff at the concrete doughnut
What do you mean, I have to POST a PHYSICAL CHEQUE to get my gun licence?
Stop bitching about firearms fees - we need computerisation
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM
'Not aware' that one IP can hold more than one Website
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.