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Court Rules That Palin Must Save Yahoo Emails 412

Posted by timothy
from the hope-yahoo's-ok-with-that dept.
quarterbuck writes "An Anchorage judge has ruled that Governor Sarah Palin must save her emails, as they were apparently used for state business. Last week a Tennessee man was arrested over hacking one of her Yahoo email accounts. The Washington Post also reports that Sarah Palin, her husband, and officials had set up email accounts known only to each other."
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Court Rules That Palin Must Save Yahoo Emails

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  • by Drakin020 (980931) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:21PM (#25346885)

    I guess you can say that 4chan kid took one for the team.

    Had he not gained access (I don't use the word hack because he didn't hack anything) to her email account, this decision may not have come to be.

    I guess you can say he took one for the team although that may not have been his original intentions.

    • by Ethanol-fueled (1125189) * on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:27PM (#25346937) Homepage Journal
      Before he was arrested, he posted that he was afraid and he basically bailed out. That's why he didn't back up the e-mails.

      Now he's going to be seen the some cowering, harmless punk kid who half-wittedly exposed the blatant stupidity of Sarah Palin and the weaknesses of Yahoo and similar mail services.
      • by Drakin020 (980931) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:29PM (#25346953)
        But do you think that if he had not gained access to her emails, this decision would have been made? Regardless if he backed out, this still resulted in her being forced to keep her yahoo emails. This could come back to bite her if she doesn't remove those emails first.
        • by Danse (1026) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:51PM (#25347107)

          But do you think that if he had not gained access to her emails, this decision would have been made? Regardless if he backed out, this still resulted in her being forced to keep her yahoo emails. This could come back to bite her if she doesn't remove those emails first.

          I believe there was already an effort underway by some Alaskans to gain access to the emails in the commercial accounts that Palin and her staff were using. The account that got hacked was actually her personal Yahoo account, not one of the ones normally used for official business.

          • by thetoadwarrior (1268702) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @04:03PM (#25347187) Homepage
            Personal email accounts called gov.palin@yahoo.com and where the subjects clearly implied she was talking business?

            Sorry, I don't believe for a second they were personal.
            • by Danse (1026) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @04:08PM (#25347229)

              Personal email accounts called gov.palin@yahoo.com and where the subjects clearly implied she was talking business?

              Sorry, I don't believe for a second they were personal.

              gov.palin@yahoo.com was her personal use account. gov.sarah@yahoo.com was the one that she was using for official state business [adn.com].

              • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @04:27PM (#25347381)

                gov.palin@yahoo.com was her personal use account. gov.sarah@yahoo.com was the one that she was using for official state business.

                It doesn't really matter what she says the account was used for, it is the actual usage that counts.
                The list of subjects and correspondents from the so-called 'personal use account' that are posted on wikileaks is extremely incriminating.

                I'm sure that the worst punishment she will receive will be a slap on the wrist, after all the president and his staff have already done far worse wrt to email hiding and nothing happened to them. But what it does do is expose 'politics as usual' for her, all claims to maverick status are pretty much null and void now.

                • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

                  by Danse (1026)

                  My point was that it doesn't make a whole lot of difference if she was using the gov.palin@yahoo.com account for state business, because we already know she was using the other one for it. Whether it's either or both, she was circumventing the security and accountability of the state system.

                • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                  by rtb61 (674572)
                  In this context where there clearly was a premeditated and planned intent to avoid the legal requirements of maintaining records of government correspondence. Their intent was to arrange a method of communications, that they could hide from the public, clearly their intent was criminal, as such the full weight of the law should be measured out, other wise they make a mockery of their own laws.

                  Underlying that is the enormous ego of creating your own personal governor for life email address on public web ma

          • by Maxmin (921568) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @05:43PM (#25348065)

            The account that got hacked was actually her personal Yahoo account, not one of the ones normally used for official business.

            Some interesting news on this front: because Palin deleted her Yahoo email accounts, she may be up for destruction of evidence charges. Felony if true, up to four years in prison.

            Shortly after the email account hack, Time revealed that the feds already had access to her Yahoo email accounts [time.com], as part of a federal investigation into Troopergate.

            One shoe left to drop, and it's the big one. Hopefully we'll hear something about it during October, though it's quite plausible that the current DOJ may drag their feet well past election day.

    • From the looks of it, the one who got in trouble was not the one that gained access, but the one that took the screenshots and returned the account back to Palin.

  • ...she will claim that the emails were already deleted, either by her, the "hacker," or by Yahoo.
    • by commodoresloat (172735) * on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:26PM (#25346925)

      Or she'll just claim the emails say the exact opposite of what they actually say, just like she did with the troopergate report [cbsnews.com].

      • by rossz (67331)

        Buried in the troopergate report is a sentence that says what she did was within her constitutional powers. The ethics law she supposedly violated is written so broadly that ordering lunch could be a violation. Basically, any decision made is considered a violation if it makes you happy.

        Anyone else in her position would have done the same thing, so I won't fault her for that. Her politics, on the other hand, are way too religiously conservative for my taste.

    • by Azarael (896715) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:27PM (#25346933) Homepage
      Until Yahoo gets subpoenaed to pull the email off of the back ups that they haven't deleted yet. Anyway, you could make a strong argument that given the circumstances, deleting the email would be considered destruction of evidence, which a US court _could_ hit you for.
    • by Coopjust (872796)
      I'm sure that Yahoo keeps some form of backups, and if they are court ordered to preserve those backups, they will. I've read several stories stating that deleted emails on Gmail are kept for months later in backups.

      I'm sure that the emails are still being kept in their entirety, or close to it, somewhere at Yahoo.
  • Gmail (Score:5, Funny)

    by Bicx (1042846) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:23PM (#25346911)
    She should just go with Gmail. Google will save her information whether she likes it or not.
  • Taking bets (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Drakin020 (980931) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:26PM (#25346927)

    What do you want to bet she went ahead and cleared out any potentially incriminating emails?

    I wonder if Yahoo would be able to retrieve it or if they would even have to.

  • by gandhi_2 (1108023) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:31PM (#25346971) Homepage
    She set up email addresses known only to her husband? How heinous!

    The super-secret one that got haxored? gov.palin@yahoo.com

    Will the right-wing treachery know no bounds?

    • by cliffski (65094) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:36PM (#25347007) Homepage

      why is a government employee sending emails on govt business through a free email account?
      Why are taxpayers paying for the states computer infrastructure if she isn't using it?
      Of course something dodgy is going on.

      • by Derling Whirvish (636322) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:49PM (#25347077) Journal

        why is a government employee sending emails on govt business through a free email account?

        Because it's illegal to send campaign messages, partisan political messages, or e-mails dealing with RNC activities through a government account.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by aug24 (38229)

          I'll make the quote more obvious for you

          "...emails on **************govt************** business..."

          Got it now?

          Justin.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Danse (1026)

          why is a government employee sending emails on govt business through a free email account?

          Because it's illegal to send campaign messages, partisan political messages, or e-mails dealing with RNC activities through a government account.

          Those things aren't government business.

  • by GISGEOLOGYGEEK (708023) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:33PM (#25346983)

    Why would Palin care to delete any emails, or even try to hide them?

    Palin is a young earth creationist. She has no understanding of Evidence.

  • great (Score:5, Funny)

    by nomadic (141991) <nomadicworldNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday October 12, 2008 @03:39PM (#25347025) Homepage
    Now can the Court issue an injunction barring her from using that ridiculously fake and obnoxious accent?
  • by EtherealFlaim (768450) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @04:11PM (#25347257)

    Not only was she stupid enough to have her yahoo account password resettable by an outsider, she was stupid enough to conduct state business on this and other non-state-secured e-mail accounts.

    I'm sorry, but anyone who doesn't realize that in order to be safe it ALWAYS important to assume that your emails are immediately and fully in the hands of your worst enemies is hopelessly naive. Besides the sketchily legal issue of conducting state business over unsecure email, she also copied her husband on some of it.

    Seriously Palin? Talk about it over the dinner table. Sending the email to your hubbie sends it over unsecure servers in the internet proper where they could be read in transit by any number of unruly or dangerous individuals. And that's assuming that she was sending it from a state-secured email on state-secured servers, which she obviously didn't at least some of the time.

    The scary part now is that if she were to pull the same stuff in the whitehouse, there would be terrorists and spies trying to get ahold of national secrets, not just the inner workings of a state government. And I think we can all agree that the resources they have at their disposal are frightening.

    I'm much happier with her gambling with Alaskan politics than National Security.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by phanboy_iv (1006659)
      Unfortunately, I suspect that the vast majority of Americans on the internet are indeed this naive, Palin is just a highly visible example. Sad, but true.
    • She is extremely photogenic and has a beautiful smile with even, white teeth.

      Do you REALLY think that the majority of Americans are going to be able to see past that?

      I don't.

      Palin will win the election for McCain.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Doctor_Jest (688315)
        Do you really think the majority of americans can see past the other side's sugar-coated lies either? Dare I say it, the lesser of two evils is NEITHER candidate. Biden's a plagiarist, a career liar, and the biggest moron from the tiniest state... Palin's a moron from Alaska... Obama's a huckster with ties to the very problem we're in now (google is your friend), and McCain is a dumbass.

        If either candidate wins, WE ALL LOSE. It's that goddamned simple... but leave it to the apologists to somehow paint
    • Well, when Joe Biden said Roosevelt got on TV to reassure Americans... I suspect we are surrounded by morons...

      it's all in what you choose to ignore....
  • Oh my (Score:3, Funny)

    by FornaxChemica (968594) on Sunday October 12, 2008 @04:13PM (#25347265) Homepage Journal

    Sarah Palin, her husband, and officials had set up email accounts known only to each other.

    sarah_for_vp@hotmail.com

  • by Brad1138 (590148) * <brad1138@yahoo.com> on Sunday October 12, 2008 @04:27PM (#25347383)
    that's what McCain meant by "Fellow Prisoners" [youtube.com]?
  • by moteyalpha (1228680) * on Sunday October 12, 2008 @04:44PM (#25347553) Homepage Journal
    GGG://hoist.by.ones.own.petard.gov
    There was an article here on a bad search warrant that led to a criminal. So it seems, that no matter how badly the process is flawed, the ends justify the means and I think it is appropriate that if every single thing I do is scrutinized in or out of context, then the same should be true for the politicians who are more likely to do a great deal of damage, simply because they control many more resources, that are supposedly owned by everybody.

To err is human -- to blame it on a computer is even more so.

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