Ryan Gallagher on the ability of Skype to eavesdrop on conversations:

In May 2011, Microsoft bought over Skype for $8.5 billion. One month later, in June, Microsoft was granted a patent for “legal intercept” technology designed to be used with VOIP services like Skype to “silently copy communication transmitted via the communication session.” Whether this technology was subsequently integrated into the Skype architecture, it’s impossible to say for sure.

Software developers are complaining that a change in the Skype architecture looks to make it more readily available to law enforcement eavesdropping, but no comment from Skype. I take the no comment stance as confirmation that they can do it, but that law enforcement would rather they not say.

Otherwise I think Skype would just market the technology as secure. This seems like a greasy used car salesmen saying: “You’re a terrorist, perfect app for you to use to plan things. What? Oh I can’t comment on that, but you should totally use this. Totally.”

Best just to assume — as with most web services — that what you do will be made public one day.


Posted by Ben Brooks