February 3, 2012
In one exchange, MegaUpload managers fretted via Skype IM chat in 2007 that founder Kim Dotcom wasn't "safe with his money" and "the current situation is a bit risky," according to documents U.S. authorities filed with a New Zealand court this month as part of their criminal pursuit of the embattled cyberlocker service.
While it's still not clear how federal investigators gained access to the conversations of founder Kim DotCom and other top managers, there are hints that the FBI managed to place government-issued spyware on the defendants' computers.
The FBI cites alleged conversations between DotCom and his top lieutenants, including e-mail and Skype instant-messaging logs. Some of the records go back nearly five years, to MegaUpload's earliest days as a cyberlocker service--even though Skype says "IM history messages will be stored for a maximum of 30 days" and the criminal investigation didn't begin until a few months ago.
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