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With Megaupload closed down, Kim Dotcom introduces a replacement called Mega and hundreds of thousands respond.
The initial success of Mega shouldn’t surprise anyone; there are few people who know more about secure storage than Kim Dotcom.
The showy former hacker turned online tycoon launched his replacement today for the boarded up MegaUpload saying he’s brining “encryption to the mainstream.”
Dotcom told the Wall Street Journal before the launch that he expected his new site – Mega.co.nz – to become a “significant player” within a year, but quickly upgraded those expectations as Internet users flooded the new site.
He used Twitter to update the world, saying a couple of hours after launching that he had “250,000 user registrations. Server capacity on maximum load. Should get better when initial frenzy is over. Wow!!!”
As for Mega, it offers 50 GB of free, encrypted storage space online. Users can pay to upgrade.
The site launched in true Dotcom fashion with a lavish party at his sprawling mansion. Online, it was equally well received and hard to access on Day 1.
Dotcom, the 38-year-old German native born Kim Schmitz, still faces years in jail if convicted of copyright infringement in the US. Spending time in a secure facility is nothing new for Dotcom, who has been convicted in the past of insider trading.
More from GlobalPost: Mega to replace MegaUpload in 2013
He now lives in New Zealand and vowed to continue fighting the charges.
“This whole indictment is crap,” Dotcom told the WSJ. “We will show the malicious and bad faith construction of this case so if they want to go there I’m game.”
— Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) January 19, 2013
A New Zealand SWAT team extracted Dotcom from his mansion exactly one year ago for US prosecutors.
American authorities charge Dotcom and his colleagues with online piracy for their old file sharing website Megaupload.com.
The FBI alleged that Megaupload held pirated material worth $500 million, but he said the new site isn’t about getting back at his persecutors.
Dotcom told Reuters that his lawyers have ensured Mega complies with all of his bail conditions.
“Legally, there’s just nothing there that could be used to shut us down, this site is just as legitimate and has the right to exist as Dropbox, Boxnet and other the other competitors in this space,” he said.
More from GlobalPost: NZ spy agency, PM apologize to Dotcom