Techwatch: Jan. 26, 1998

SECRETS AND LIES: ONLINE PRIVACY UNDER FIRE

Had it not been for a single e-mail message sent to a Navy crewmate's wife, Senior Chief Petty Officer Timothy McVeigh might still be the top enlisted man on his nuclear submarine. But his choice last fall of the electronic screen name "BOYSRCH" on America Online snowballed into a military investigation of his AOL profile, which listed his marital status as gay, and a call to AOL, which promptly confirmed his identity. Now facing honorable discharge for homosexuality, McVeigh (no relation to the Oklahoma City bomber) has taken his case to federal court. His...

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