Last summer, German secure email provider Posteo faced a do-or-die moment: give in to police threats to seize its servers or fight back in court. Investigators in the state of Bavaria had contacted the Berlin-based startup because they wanted the identity of a Posteo account holder who was thought to be using the service for illicit purposes. But Patrik and Sabrina Löhr, the husband-and-wife team who run the swiftly growing email provider, told police time and again that they simply couldn’t comply: Posteo is an anonymous email provider; it doesn’t store any data on its customers’ identities.
“We went around in circles with the authorities,” Patrik Löhr says. “But when we looked at their search warrant, we saw that it didn’t, in fact, give them permission to search our whole office. They were only allowed to receive a list of our bank transactions – which they already had gotten from the bank.” Löhr filed a suit against police officials, accusing them of intimidation. That move, the media attention it generated, and a stated commitment to transparency made all the more relevant in the wake of the Edward Snowden leaks, has helped Posteo become one of Germany’s fastest growing email providers with a business model of fee-driven, privacy-oriented email services.
Read the Full Article: Source – The Guardian