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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 117401
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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This issue pertains to Cyber Law. I am looking for legal

Customer Question

This issue pertains to Cyber Law. I am looking for legal advice for running a service (on a site) which would allow publicly leaked databases to be searched as well as some other features (not important in this case). This would entail making leaked username, emails, passwords, etc (combinations of these) searchable. An example of this is LeakedSource (google it.) I will follow any means necessary to keep this fully legal.
The legal question pertains to online websites but if you must know location .
Country is USA and state is MD if this is needed.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
First off, that type of site can get you into trouble and as long as you host the site in the US, the courts can shut it down. However, hosting such a site with such information at an offshore location would avoid the court interfering. Furthermore, just because sites are "publicly leaked" does not make the information contained on them any less confidential and if I understand you are providing merely a search tool to find what has been leaked and you are not actually hosting this leaked information on your site. If you are not hosting the actual information on your site, then you could have such a site in the US and any information it searches coming from other sites would not get you in legal trouble, since you are just directing parties to the other sites where the leaked information is contained.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

So if it was hosted offshore would that make it legal, also what are the laws that would prevent me from hosting such information. What am I allowed to host or display legally? Thanks!

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

And to clarify I would be hosted the leaked information on my site in order to make it searchable but the user would not have access to this raw data.

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
Not exactly legal, but outside of the scope of the US courts to do anything about at the least. You can display links to the sites where the information can be found, but you should not be displaying the information itself on your site.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

There's another site that's run by a Microsoft MVP called HaveIBeenPwned, what are the factors that make this legal?

What law would displaying the information be in violation of?

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
The key is you have to avoid posting confidential information or you could be sued for invasion of privacy.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Ok I appreciate the clarification, the last question I have is what is considered confidential information about someone and am I legally ok to host the leaked information in my database or will I run into trouble with that?

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
Personal account information and PIN numbers or passwords are confidential and if you have that information on your site you could run into issues, including being charged with conspiracy to commit computer hacking or fraud for making the information available. If you simply put links to other sites on your site and those links go to other sites where the information can be found you should not be violating any laws.