Kim Dotcom's Megaupload file-sharing service has been essentially erased from the web. After being taken offline by the Department of Justice last year, data uploaded to Megaupload has now been deleted from the servers it was stored on by Dotcom's former hosting service, LeaseWeb. Dotcom, who has since launched another storage service called Mega, took to Twitter on Wednesday to express his outrage at LeaseWeb's move, which he says took place without warning. LeaseWeb, on the other hand, says that it reached out to Dotcom before deleting Megaupload's data, but it received no response.
"Millions of personal #Megaupload files, petabytes of pictures, backups, personal & business property forever destroyed by #LeaseWeb," Dotcom wrote on Twitter. "This is the largest data massacre in the history of the internet caused by the US government, the Department of Justice & #LeaseWeb." Dotcom said that LeaseWeb informed him today that the servers hosting Megaupload files were wiped clean on February 1st.
The data is gone, but this dispute seems to be just starting
LeaseWeb says that indeed, the servers were wiped in February, but that it sent the company notice of the erasure in beforehand, though it didn't say when. In a statement emailed to The Verge, LeaseWeb's senior lawyer Alex de Joode said that nobody had attempted to access the Megaupload data in more than a year. Joode also said that LeaseWeb had set aside 630 rented servers to host Megaupload's data after the US government had physically confiscated 60 other servers. Megaupload never paid LeaseWeb for storing data on the 630 servers, he said.
After receiving no response from Megaupload as to what to do with its data, LeaseWeb decided to repurpose the 630 servers for other paying clients. "To minimize security risks and maximize the privacy of our clients, it is a standard procedure at LeaseWeb to completely clean servers before they are offered to any new customer," Jood said. Dotcom maintains a different story. "Our lawyers have repeatedly asked #Leaseweb not to delete #Megaupload servers while court proceedings are pending in the US," he wrote on Twitter. "I'm in tears #Leaseweb."