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Details emerge on sequel to Megaupload service

image captionMegaupload was shut down following raids co-ordinated by the FBI

More details have emerged about the web storage service being set up by Megaupload boss Kim Dotcom.

The Mega cyber-locker service will be a sequel to the popular Megaupload system that was shut down in January 2012.

Police raids on the offices of Megaupload and home of founder Kim Dotcom led to the closure of the file-saving and sharing system.

The switch-on date for the new Mega service is 20 January, almost exactly a year after Megaupload was shuttered.

More details about Mega were revealed in a series of tweets Mr Dotcom posted to his Twitter account.

He said every customer would have 50 gigabytes of free storage - far more than is offered by rival services such as Dropbox or Microsoft's SkyDrive.

Mega is expected to be a web-based service that lets people upload and store files of any kind. Data will be encrypted so only those who upload data have access to it. Data is also being held in the cloud to make it easy for users to get and share files.

The 2012 raids on Megaupload were carried out because, said US law enforcement, many users of Megaupload were engaged in pirating content and illegally sharing it. They accused Mr Dotcom and other managers at Megaupload had profited from the piracy.

Official apology

Mr Dotcom has rebuffed the accusations and is fighting a legal battle to stay in New Zealand from where he ran Megaupload. A hearing on whether he is can be extradited to the US is due to be held in March.

The case has generated controversy in New Zealand over the way the police and intelligence services gathered evidence before the raid and won an apology to Mr Dotcom from the country's prime minister. Mr Dotcom has also won support from prominent technologists such as Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.

The raid on Megaupload put 25 petabytes of data uploaded to it by its 50 million members into a legal limbo.

In one message, Mr Dotcom said he was working with lawyers and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which campaigns on digital rights issues, to get access to that seized data and return it to users.

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