Utah internet provider pushing back against warrantless subpoenas

Thursday , March 06, 2014 - 12:45 PM


SALT LAKE CITY -- The creator of a Utah-based Internet service provider is pushing back against a Utah law allowing prosecutors to obtain information about his customers without a search warrant.

Under a Utah law, prosecutors have expansive power to order internet providers to hand over names, addresses, phone records and other information about suspected child predators.

The law allows the attorney general's office to obtain the information by issuing an administrative subpoena, which doesn't require a judge's approval.

Pete Ashdown, who created Utah Internet service provider XMission, is refusing to comply with the orders, which he says are unconstitutional.

The Utah Attorney General's Office has issued about 1,000 of the warrantless subpoenas since the law went into effect in 2009, and says most companies comply with the orders.

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