Business isn't looking too good for Yahoo.
The company that is in the midst of being sold to Verizon has just been exposed for secretly building software to search all of its customers' emails for information at the request of U.S. intelligence officials, Reuters reported Tuesday.
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According to two former employees speaking anonymously to Reuters , the company complied to the request that was sent from either the National Security Agency or the FBI to Yahoo's legal team.
The software reportedly had the ability to search all of Yahoo Mail accounts in real time.
It is not known if Yahoo handed any information over to the government.
“Yahoo is a law abiding company, and complies with the laws of the United States," Yahoo said in a statement to Mashable.
The decision came even as Yahoo had previously fought against such government requests that violated user privacy. In 2007, Yahoofought against the NSA's PRISM program, the classified program on tapping user data that also included companies like Google Facebook, Microsoft and Apple. Yahoo ended up losing that battle.
This time around, according to report, Yahoo did not put up a fight. That decision, by Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, reportedly led to the resignation of Alex Stamos, formerly Yahoo chief security officer who later joined Facebook.
The U.S. government could have made this request to other tech companies as well.
Facebook, Apple, Microsoft and Google did not immediately respond to Mashable 's request for comment.
Glenn Greenwald, a journalist for The Intercept who also has worked with Edward Snowden on stories about the U.S. government's data collection, speculated that other companies were at least asked to do something similar.
Hard to believe this program was confined to Yahoo. https://t.co/wQnBv7nSj8
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) October 4, 2016
The report comes two weeks after Yahooofficially admitted to a hack of at least 500 million user accounts. One former executive estimated that between 1 and 3 billion accounts could have been affected.
Verizon, which announced in July it would acquire Yahoo's core assets for $4.83 billion,issued a statement in response to the hack. The telecom declined to comment on the Reuters report.