ICG Link News
Email and Digital Privacy
Locally stored email is considered more private than mail stored in webmail. Under the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act, messages left on a server are considered abandoned after six months and law enforcement can easily get a subpoena to obtain them. A group of ISPs is lobbying to extend the protections afforded to locally stored messages to messages stored on third party servers, but, surprisingly, the current administration is urging Congress not to reform the law.
This is not necessarily an action item for you, just something to consider when you make decisions about email privacy. Be aware that when you use any webmail service such as Yahoo mail, Google mail, etc, that your historical trash may not actually be deleted and that your service provider may be required to turn over the contents to authorities.
Here's an article on the subject from Cnet.