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The Eagle

Microsoft Is Reading Everything You Write

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Anyone who uses Skype has consented to the company reading everything they write. The H's associates in Germany at heise Security have now discovered that the Microsoft subsidiary does in fact make use of this privilege in practice.

[...]

Back in January, civil rights groups sent an open letter to Microsoft questioning the security of Skype communication since the takeover. The groups behind the letter, which included the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Reporters without Borders expressed concern that the restructuring resulting from the takeover meant that Skype would have to comply with US laws on eavesdropping and would therefore have to permit government agencies and secret services to access Skype communications.

In summary, The H and heise Security believe that, having consented to Microsoft using all data transmitted over the service pretty much however it likes, all Skype users should assume that this will actually happen and that the company is not going to reveal what exactly it gets up to with this data.

Heise is a German publisher of the most popular German IT magazine and they are well respected in the IT world.

The article contains further technical details on how Heise proved beyond any doubt that MS is indeed scanning (and quite likely also logging) everything you type in a Skype chat:

http://www.h-online.com/security/news/item/Skype-with-care-Microsoft-is-reading-everything-you-write-1862870.html

In other words using Skype chat for sensitive private chats or for business confidential info is a very bad idea.

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Data protection act would still apply (provided both parties were in the UK of course).

The same applies to google if you use gmail or any of their products/sites.

The spread of private information on-line was why the DPA was brought to statute.

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In other words using Skype chat for sensitive private chats or for business confidential info is a very bad idea.

No way! Really though, anybody who thinks privacy/anonymity goes hand in hand with that fancy mobile in your pocket or using IP for communications without a minimum of public-key cryptographic algo is THICK indeed.

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They record video as well?

Perhaps, but if he uses the binary language of moisture evaporators, it will take a long, long time before the technology exists to create a protocol droid that can decipher it.

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Guest eight

I thought as much when they began running a TV ad campaign saying how much they respect your privacy.

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Would that apply to the Linux/Android version of Skype as well?

Yes, it is still using a patented proprietary protocol across IP, regardless of the operating system.

5.7 Content of Communications: Skype is not the source of, does not verify or endorse and takes no responsibility for the content of communications made using the Software. By using the Software, you agree that any content that you submit may be transmitted to the recipient of your communication. The content of communications is entirely the responsibility of the person from whom such content originated. You therefore may be exposed to content that is offensive, unlawful, harmful to minors, obscene, indecent or otherwise objectionable. The content of communications may be protected by intellectual property rights, which are owned by third parties. You are responsible for the content you choose to communicate and access using the Software. In particular, you are responsible for ensuring that you do not submit material that is (i) copyrighted, protected by trade secret or otherwise subject to third party proprietary rights, including privacy and publicity rights, unless you are the owner of such rights or have permission from their rightful owner (ii) a falsehood or misrepresentation (iii) offensive, unlawful, harmful to minors, obscene, defamatory, libellous, threatening, pornographic, harassing, hateful, racially or ethnically offensive, or that encourages conduct that would be considered a criminal offense, gives rise to civil liability, violates any law, or is otherwise objectionable; (iv) an advertisement or solicitation of business; or (v) impersonating another person. Skype reserves the right (but shall have no obligation) to review content for the purpose of enforcing these Terms. Skype may in its sole discretion block, prevent delivery of or otherwise remove the content of communications as part of its effort to protect the Software, Products or its customers, or otherwise enforce these Terms. Further, Skype may in its sole discretion remove such content and/or terminate these Terms and your User Account if you use any content that is in breach of these Terms.

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Since the 1980's, all communications across transatlantic cables between the UK & US (and, I presume, satellite too) are monitored by the US authorities. Internet, voice, etc. There are automated systems that pick up on keywords as the sheer volume of traffic is too much for humans to monitor. While the US constitution forbids the monitoring of US citizens in the US (ha ha) I believe that GCHQ helpfully provides the US with these facilites to spy on UK citizens, and US citizens outside US jurisdiction.

GCHQ was even able to do this back in the 1980's when GCHQ did not exist.

It is necessary in order to stop terrorism, because terrorists hate us for our freedoms.

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Data protection act would still apply (provided both parties were in the UK of course).

The same applies to google if you use gmail or any of their products/sites.

It might apply in theory but in practice is appears to be completely ignored by US centric companies like MS or Google.

Basically expecting companies to follow the DPA is very naive.

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It might apply in theory but in practice is appears to be completely ignored by US centric companies like MS or Google.

Basically expecting companies to follow the DPA is very naive.

It doesn't apply if investigation is under the guile of anti-terrorism, here or anywhere.

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  • 261 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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