Microsoft's secret backdoor into Windows revealed

I was intrigued to read over on Techspot that Microsoft is helping police in several countries when it comes to giving them access to Windows-driven PCs with security safeguards installed.

The story - if it is to be believed - is that Microsoft has a piece of software that allow police and other agencies to by-pass security safeguards on desktops and laptops they need access to.

My first thought was that Windows clearly has a series of API backdoors in it, allowing Microsoft (and others) to gain access to a computer with a Windows password and/or encryption.

But then I started realising that this utility also by-passed other so-called security applications.

Known as COFEE - Computer Online Forensic Evidence Extractor - the software comes installed on a USB stick that reportedly allows police to carry out instant and on-demand site surveys of suspects' PC when they need to.

According to Techspot, COFEE, which is now in use by more than 2,000 coppers in 15 countries, features more than 150 commands and includes the ability to check surfing history, decrypt passwords and other handy features.

As the IT news portal says, it's worrying to think what would happen if this software fell into the wrong hands...