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Modern messaging (email) technology, policies, implications

The climate research messaging archive that was released surreptitiously, in two parts with a protected archive so far, provides a good example for learning about how electronic messaging works and the laws regarding privacy and retention that have been put together to balance privacy and legal openness. Anthony Watts provides a very good synopsis of these issues in his post on The Climategate email network infrastructure.

Since both ClimateGate 1&2 there has been considerable confusion in regard to how the emails were obtained, how the FOIA requests were managed, and what was or wasn’t possible in that context. There is no simple answer to those questions.

The issues get into corporate responsibilities, archiving and backup systems, and security issues.

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