I suppose in the Land of the Free, the FBI has the authority to do absolutely anything they want, to anyone, whenever they want to. That’s the only way to explain the actions of the FBI as of late. According to the New York Times, the FBI seized Web-hosting servers from a DigitalOne data facility yesterday causing a number of websites to go down or transfer operations to back-up facilities.
Though the raid was apparently for one target, the FBI Agents confiscated three racks of blade servers causing DigitalOne’s site, as well as the sites of the Curbed Network and the restaurant blog Eater to be inaccessible.
A bookmarking site Pinboard, was also affected by the server confiscation and was forced to move operations to a back-up server and cut off access to many parts of the site. The raid also affected a server used by Instapaper, a popular service that saves articles for later reading.
CNET reports Sergej Ostroumow said the FBI was interested in one specific client. “FBI was interesting only in one of clients and it is absolutely unintelligible, why they took servers of tens of clients,” Ostroumow said. “After FBI’s unprofessional ‘work’ we can not restart our own servers, that’s why our website is offline and support doesn’t work.”
It’s not like these sites were a bunch of gambling.com’s, though the FBI’s intended target may have been. Regardless, the FBI hasn’t bothered to compensate the websites for the inconvenience or even offer an explanation of who they were looking for or why it was necessary to shut down so many websites without warning.
I suppose from the FBI’s point of view, when you are above and beyond the law, you can do whatever you want, due process is for suckers.