The shutting down of MegaUpload is one of the biggest news stories of 2012. The piracy aspect of the story is, of course, impossible to ignore. However, there are also people that used MegaUpload to store (legal) personal files and data. These people have no way of accessing their files and if MegaUpload can't convince the United States to allow them temporary access to the service, they might lose them for good.
TorrentFreak reports that MegaUpload has received a letter from the US Attorney informing the company that data uploaded by its users may be destroyed before the end of the week.
"We received a letter very late Friday from the US Attorney that declared there could be an imminent destruction of Megaupload consumer data files on this coming Thursday," MegaUpload lawyer Ira Rothken told TorrentFreak.
The decision to delete user data is said to be a result of MegaUpload's inability to pay for the servers. The site's assets were frozen by the U.S. government so it cannot pay for the bandwidth to store users' data. This means MegaUpload users may not have the chance to save their data before it's deleted. According to TF, MegaUpload is in the process of trying to convince the government to allow users temporary access to the service.
"Megaupload’s assets were frozen by the United States. Mega needs funds unfrozen to pay for bandwidth, hosting, and systems administration in order to allow consumers to get access to their data stored in the Mega cloud and to back up the same for safekeeping," said Rothken.
Rothken said today that after talks with different parties, users' data is safe for at least two more weeks. This will mean more time for MegaUpload and the U.S. government to sort out a way for users to access their data before it is wiped.