According to an internal National Security Agency (NSA) document released by Edward Snowden, the GCHQ (secret service of the United Kingdom) - acting on its own behalf and that of the United States - intercepted millions of private webcam chats exchanged on Yahoo.

The document states that 3-11% of collected images are pornographic in nature and that Crown agents are exempt from opening them.

In 2008, during the first six months of the Optic Nerve program GCHQ intercepted the communications of 1.8 million Yahoo subscribers.

(Photo: Sir Iain Lobban, the head of GCHQ)


- “Optic Nerve: millions of Yahoo webcam images intercepted by GCHQ”, by Spencer Ackerman and James Ball, The Guardian, 28 February 2014.
- “GCHQ’s cover for Optic Nerve provided by legislation introduced in 2000”, by Nick Hopkins, The Guardian, 27 February 2014.