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Can the government force a private business entity to lie to their customer? If not, then why can't Microsoft just setup some sort of service/status report that basically outputs "no" if and only if the government did not access data and "unknown" otherwise.

This sounds very similar to a warrant canary - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warrant_canary

That sounds like a great technical solution.

I still think MS should pursue their case but I wonder why they have not set up the system you're describing, given that another commenter's link suggests it is legal [1]

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warrant_canary

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