Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Clear Your Browser Cache — Be Charged With Obstructing Justice, Even If You Never Knew FBI Was Seeking A Warrant Regarding Your Computer

Juliana DeVries at The Nation provides details of one case and a sketch of the history of the use and abuse of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (2002). Yes, you could be prosecuted for clearing your browser history if you were under investigation by the FBI, even if you had no knowledge of the existence of the investigation, and yes, it has happened to one or more people in real life. In the case in question, the cab driver was charged with four counts of obstruction of justice, three for lying to the FBI (always a bad idea) regarding the Tsarnaev brothers of Boston Marathon bombing infamy, and one for removing some material from his personal computer that might have associated him with the Tsarnaevs.

It beggars belief that the simple act of clearing your browser cache, something many people do routinely, something about which your intent or state of mind in doing is almost impossible to prove absent independent evidence, could get you sent to jail for decades.

What an era we live in! I doubt our nation's founders would recognize what has become of federal law enforcement as being in any way related to, let alone descended from, the system they created.

Once again, I wonder whether Mr. Godwin's long-valuable wisdom still reflects reality... I keep having a deep-seated inclination to violate Godwin's Law regarding cases like these.

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