May 9, 2013
The State Department, Greenberg also reports, has sent the company a letter, calling for them to take down the computer-aided design, or CAD, files, citing a potential violation of export control laws. A State Department spokesperson confirmed that the department has been in communication with the company, but would not provide any details as to the nature of the communication or the message conveyed. Defense Distributed’s download site, defcad.org, features the following message:
“DEFCAD files are being removed from public access at the request of the US Department of Defense Trade Controls. Until further notice, the United States government claims control of the information.”
And Defense Distributed posted the following tweet announcing that the site had “gone dark:”
#DEFCAD has gone dark at the request of the Department of Defense Trade Controls. Take it up with the Secretary of State.
— Defense Distributed (@DefDist) May 9, 2013
It may be too late, however, to stop anyone determined to get a copy of the computer-aided design, or CAD, files. The files are being hosted on Mega and have been uploaded to the Pirate Bay.