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FBI Data Center Raid Disrupts Instapaper

Instapaper Logo by Instapaper

(NEW YORK) -- Instapaper, a service that stores web pages for offline viewing, recently experienced a significant reduction in performance. While performance issues frequently plague small Internet companies, Instapaper’s troubles may have been analogue, not digital.

This afternoon founder and developer Marco Arment reported on his blog that Instapaper servers were seized by the FBI during a raid on his web host’s data center. Mr. Arment cites a New York Times report that the FBI were involved with a raid on a data center in Virginia leased by DigitalOne, a Switzerland-based web hosting company, on the morning of June 21st. A press release issued by the FBI appears to confirm that the raid took place.

ABC News has reached out to Mr. Arment for a comment. According to Mr. Arment’s blog post and subsequently confirmed by the New York Times, Instapaper’s involvement was only incidental. The FBI seized over two dozen servers as a part of larger investigation of the LulzSecurity hacker group.

According to the FBI, “warrants obtained from the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington and elsewhere throughout the United States led to the seizure of 22 computers and servers in the United States that were involved in facilitating and operating a scareware scheme.”

Instapaper has been able to rebound from the raid. However, recent cyber-attacks allegedly lead by groups such as Anonymous and LulzSecurity have increased public awareness of Internet security. Tuesday’s FBI raid may have a similar effect on the legal status of web data.


Dan Patterson

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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