Are Skype making call snooping easier?
Apparently, there are only a handful of employees who knew about the program, which is known as Project Chess, and set up before Microsoft bought the company.
If these allegations prove to be true, that means Skype were eavesdropping long before the Prism scandal which kicked off recently.
Skype would not comment on the allegations.
Last year, Skype faced similar accusations when they moved details to Microsoft and at the time, the company said: "Our position has always been that when a law enforcement entity follows the appropriate procedures, we respond where legally required and technically feasible." However, if the New York Times findings are correct, Skype had already worked out how to co-operate with intelligence agencies before the Microsoft acquisition.
Then, Microsoft made the situation more sticky after they applied for a patent that would allow them to intercept VoIP calls. Researchers at the University of Mexico found that Microsoft already allowed third parties to intercept Skype, particularly in China where the government is allowed to look for censored words and phrases.
It isn't looking good for Skype, especially given the amount of rivals that now exist.