, January 20, 2006
Yahoo has admitted that it granted the US Government access to its search engine's databases this summer, as a battle develops over the right to privacy in cyberspace.
Google, by contrast, promised last night to fight vigorously the Bush Administration’s demand to know what millions of people have been looking up on the internet.
It emerged this week that the White House issued subpoenas to a number of US-based search engines this summer, asking to see what information the public had accessed in a two-month period. It said that it needed the information in order to help create online child protection laws.
But Google refused to comply with its subpoena - prompting the US Attorney General this week to ask a federal judge in San Jose for an order to hand over the requested records. Details of the confrontation emerged after the San Jose Mercury News reported seeing the court papers on Wednesday.
At the heart of the battle is the potential for online databases to become tools for government surveillance...