Megaupload users, be warned: Your data could be deleted starting Thursday. A wealth of personal photos and documents are stored by way of Megaupload, according to the company. That data has been inaccessible to users amid an investigation over pirated materials. Megaupload pays storage companies to house its users' data—or did pay, until the government froze its money—and two of those firms have been given permission to start deleting the content this week, according to a letter filed by US prosecutors. Having carried out their search warrants, authorities no longer have a right to access to the data, they say.
Megaupload is in talks with the two companies, Carpathia Hosting and Cogent Communications Group, in hopes of protecting the data, Megaupload's lawyer tells the AP. The material isn't just important to the 50 million users who could have their data erased: Megaupload needs it to defend itself after seven people were charged in the case, he says. "We're cautiously optimistic at this point that because the United States, as well as Megaupload, should have a common desire to protect consumers, that this type of agreement will get done," says the attorney. (Click to read more about colorful founder Kim Dotcom.)