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Megaupload Founder Reveals U.S. Government Usage Stats

| 26 Mar 2012 21:43
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It turns out that the U.S. military had over 15,000 active accounts on Megaupload, while other agencies including Homeland Security and the FBI accounted for another 1000.

The file sharing site Megaupload was taken offline in January by the U.S. government amidst claims that it had facilitated copyright infringement to the tune of $500 million in lost revenues. I don't think anyone would argue that piracy wasn't part of the mix but the takedown was indiscriminate and complete, and left a lot of users separated from their legitimate, non-infringing data. Among those users, Megaupload founder Kit Dotcom said earlier this month, were a hefty number of folks from the U.S. government.

And now, as the effort to figure out what belongs to whom continues, some specific numbers have emerged. Dotcom told TorrentFreak that 1058 Megaupload accounts are held by users from the dhs.gov, doe.gov, fbi.gov, hhs.gov, nasa.gov, senate.gov, treas.gov and uscourts.gov domains, 344 of whom paid for premium access to the service. All told, these users uploaded 15,242 files totally 1,851,791 megabytes.

That's pretty bad, but the U.S. military has it a lot worse. 15,634 Megaupload accounts were registered from the af.mil, army.mil, centcom.mil, navy.mil, osd.mil and other related domains, 10,223 of which were paid, premium accounts. 340,983 files had been uploaded from these accounts, adding up to a whopping 96,507,779 megabytes.

Dotcom made no allegations about the nature of the data, but regardless of how it was being used, the loss of nearly 100 terabytes of data, some of which is bound to be legitimate - photos, letters, whatever - to a heavy-handed shutdown is truly unfortunate. The Electronic Frontier Foundation and Carpathia Hosting have a program to assist Megaupload users who have lost data in the takedown up now at megaretrieval.com.

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