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Microsoft helped the NSA get around its encryption systems so the agency could more easily spy on users of its services, reports suggest.

Papers given to The Guardian newspaper allege there were close links between the security agency and the tech firm.

Microsoft said its collaboration with the NSA only took place because legal obligations required it to do so.

The revelations come as some technologists start work on services they say will be impervious to spying.

 

Secure view

The information published in The Guardian comes from documents it said were given to the paper by whistle blower Edward Snowden and shed more light on how closely tech firms work with the US National Security Agency and its Prism programme.

The documents show that the NSA had access to most of Microsoft's flagship products including Hotmail, Outlook.com, SkyDrive and Skype. In the case of Outlook.com, Microsoft reportedly worked with the NSA to help it get around its own data-scrambling scheme that would have concealed messages from the agency.

As regards to Skype, the NSA reportedly said in the documents that it had improved its oversight of the web phone system so much that it could now collect three times as many calls from the service than before.

Even before Skype was bought by Microsoft it was providing information on some of its users through Prism.

The documents seen by The Guardian are reportedly from the NSA's Special Source Operations office which oversees the links between the agency and tech firms. The documents show that the access the NSA enjoyed made it far easier for intelligence workers to get at accounts on many Microsoft services.

Source and full story (Link to Guardian article above in text)

So there we have it. Your data really isn't any more secure with Microsoft

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That BBC post is just rehashing what the Guardian article said,  can we see the so called documents the Guardian says it was shown?  Why aren't they linked or posted somewhere yet?  I'd like to see them and see the exact details for myself, otherwise all they're doing is saying "we've got this info that says this is going on but you'll have to take our word for it that it's like we say it is."

 

Why aren't they sharing these documents?   Without those there's really no details in this post at all. 

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Odd how nobody demanded such high standards of evidence when it was Google, oh no, everyone here was so much more eager to believe it then. So either all of the "evidence" is sketchy or none of it is, make your biased little minds up please.

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allegedly, suggests.... lets just keep adding words like supposedly, according to unverified  anonymous third party sources who claim to know what they're talking about. 


Odd how nobody demanded such high standards of evidence when it was Google, oh no, everyone here was so much more eager to believe it then. So either all of the "evidence" is sketchy or none of it is, make your biased little minds up please.

 

We demanded the same level of evidence of anyone, unverified allegations is not it. 

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The information against Google comes from the exact same sources, and from what I can gather you were pretty eager to accept it when it was their name in question. Hypocrisy much?

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The information against Google comes from the exact same sources, and from what I can gather you were pretty eager to accept it when it was their name in question. Hypocrisy much?

 

When I have I accepted that at all, or been eager to. 

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It was pretty clear that the whole point of this thread was to troll.

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It was pretty clear that the whole point of this thread was to troll.

 

It's funny because it's true, this much is evidenced by the OP's follow-up posts and the mention of Google in all of them. Maybe he's paid to defend them/move the media spotlight to other companies.

 

"Oh gosh people criticized Google for NSA collaboration, let's post this article centered around Microsoft and cry when people don't criticize them too", when in reality everything in this article is just rehashing the same thing we've been hearing for days. People are getting bored of discussing the same thing over and over with 0 evidence to move the discussion forward.

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I don't remember a similar Guardian or news post saying they've seen detailed documents about how Google or Yahoo or Facebook work with the NSA, though the Guardian post does have a line in there saying they all do.  It doesn't matter, if they have leaked documents with details like they say they do then let's seem them please.  Otherwise this is just he said she said, and any other news website rehashing their post doesn't make what they're saying any more the truth.

 

I mean come on, we've had news agencies spying on people and hacking their accounts to get details, I trust them less then I trust any of the big online services companies.  

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It's funny because it's true, this much is evidenced by the OP's follow-up posts and the mention of Google in all of them. Maybe he's paid to defend them/move the media spotlight to other companies.

 

"Oh gosh people criticized Google for NSA collaboration, let's post this article centered around Microsoft and cry when people don't criticize them too", when in reality everything in this article is just rehashing the same thing we've been hearing for days. People are getting bored of discussing the same thing over and over with 0 evidence to move the discussion forward.

 

Nope, I accept that Google, Apple, and Facebook did it as well, just pointing out that it's funny how so many Neowinians were ready to accept Google's guilt but don't seem ready to accept Microsoft's on the same evidence. The point is, they are all doing it, they all shouldn't be, and it's time for people to point a finger at the industry as a whole rather than just at Google (though given that hating Google is the default at Neowin it probably won't happen)

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Nope, I accept that Google, Apple, and Facebook did it as well, just pointing out that it's funny how so many Neowinians were ready to accept Google's guilt but don't seem ready to accept Microsoft's on the same evidence. The point is, they are all doing it, they all shouldn't be, and it's time for people to point a finger at the industry as a whole rather than just at Google (though given that hating Google is the default at Neowin it probably won't happen)

 

Actually so far seems none of them are doing it. 

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Nope, I accept that Google, Apple, and Facebook did it as well, just pointing out that it's funny how so many Neowinians were ready to accept Google's guilt but don't seem ready to accept Microsoft's on the same evidence. The point is, they are all doing it, they all shouldn't be, and it's time for people to point a finger at the industry as a whole rather than just at Google (though given that hating Google is the default at Neowin it probably won't happen)

 

Most of what I've read indicates that people are focusing on the legal obligations of the affected companies.

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Oh no, Microsoft is sending the NSA pictures of my cat.

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Nope, I accept that Google, Apple, and Facebook did it as well, just pointing out that it's funny how so many Neowinians were ready to accept Google's guilt but don't seem ready to accept Microsoft's on the same evidence. The point is, they are all doing it, they all shouldn't be, and it's time for people to point a finger at the industry as a whole rather than just at Google (though given that hating Google is the default at Neowin it probably won't happen)

Always going to be like this...especially since Neowin is a Windows site and there are more Windows fans than anything else. Being a fan isnt a bad thing...its how blinded and one sided some fans are and how they think. I use a combo of MS and Google products. If anything at Apple was of use to me, I would use something from them as well. I do work on Apple products everyday at work tho.

My advice....ignore the ones with the horse blinders on and dont let it bother you. Competition is a good thing and yes, chances are most companies are doing the exact same thing. Lots here cannot or do not want to see this.

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Time for some facts:

 

In short, when governments seek information from Microsoft relating to customers, we strive to be principled, limited in what we disclose, and committed to transparency. Put together, all of this adds up to the following across all of our software and services:

  • Microsoft does not provide any government with direct and unfettered access to our customer?s data. Microsoft only pulls and then provides the specific data mandated by the relevant legal demand.
  • If a government wants customer data ? including for national security purposes ? it needs to follow applicable legal process, meaning it must serve us with a court order for content or subpoena for account information.
  • We only respond to requests for specific accounts and identifiers. There is no blanket or indiscriminate access to Microsoft?s customer data. The aggregate data we have been able to publish shows clearly that only a tiny fraction ? fractions of a percent ? of our customers have ever been subject to a government demand related to criminal law or national security.
  • All of these requests are explicitly reviewed by Microsoft?s compliance team, who ensure the request are valid, reject those that are not, and make sure we only provide the data specified in the order. While we are obligated to comply, we continue to manage the compliance process by keeping track of the orders received, ensuring they are valid, and disclosing only the data covered by the order.

 

 

 

http://blogs.technet.com/b/microsoft_on_the_issues/archive/2013/07/16/responding-to-government-legal-demands-for-customer-data.aspx

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Super misleading article (and post).

 

The Guardian buried the line about how they only share data for individuals named by legal warrants. Shameful reporting, obviously meant to mislead.

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