Microsoft device helping solve crimes

April 30, 2008 at 3:33 AM

SEATTLE, April 30 (UPI) -- Microsoft said thousands of U.S. and international police officers are using a special USB thumb drive to gather digital evidence.

The Computer Online Forensic Evidence Extractor contains 150 commands that can quickly decrypt passwords to analyze a computer's Internet activity and stored data, eliminating the need to seize a computer itself, The Seattle Times reported Tuesday.

Microsoft provides the device for free, the newspaper said.

"These are things that we invest substantial resources in, but not from the perspective of selling to make money," Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith told the newspaper. "We're doing this to help ensure that the Internet stays safe."

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