ProtonMail defends IP address of “climate activist”

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The managing director of the Swiss e-mail provider ProtonMail has confirmed that an IP address for an account and further information has been issued at Europol’s request. This does not contradict the promise to users of the greatest possible privacy, assured Andy Yen on twitter. One is legally obliged to obey the orders in Switzerland and in the specific case the suspect “unfortunately broke Swiss laws”. There was simply no way to oppose the order, writes Yen.

It was revealed that the data was passed on by one on Sunday Report of the French Medium Secours Rouge. Accordingly, the investigation is about activists of the collective “Youth for Climate” from the movement “Fridays for Future”. They are accused of theft and break-ins in connection with occupations during demonstrations. Accordingly, communication took place via ProtonMail, among other things. Via Europol, a request was then sent to Switzerland from France to request the delivery of data from the mail provider. One had to comply with that.

While ProtonMail advertises, among other things, that no IP addresses are stored by default, the company also explains that this can be changed under certain circumstances. This includes a request from the authorities. In addition, the terms of use would explicitly forbid the service to be used by people who are involved in activities that are illegal in Switzerland. On one side, ProtonMail also refers to the fact that the mail service can also be reached via Tor, then there is no way for the provider to identify the IP from which the original call came.

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