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Reading a Skype message could reveal your location to hackers

2023-08-29 19:17 by
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Skype reportedly has a critical security flaw that could potentially allow hackers to obtain users' IP addresses if they simply open a message with a link. While Skype was once the dominant video conferencing app on the internet, it has long been superseded by many similar software options, like Zoom. Even Microsoft itself has been pushing Teams rather than giving Skype the attention it needs to regain its lost glory.

An independent security researcher called Yossi brought this vulnerability to light and reported it to Microsoft. And surprisingly, Microsoft initially downplayed the significance of the issue when it was first reported, stating that the disclosure of an IP address isn't, by itself, a security vulnerability requiring immediate action. It was then seemingly highlighted to the company that the exposure of IP addresses can lead to privacy breaches, potential abuse in personal relationships, and even more types of invasive cyberattacks - to which Microsoft apparently wouldn't budge. Upon external pressure from media outlets, Microsoft finally acknowledged how severe of a situation this was, and committed to addressing the vulnerability in an upcoming patch.

To attest to the severity of the flaw, it doesn't seem to matter what website the link takes you to. The researcher demonstrated the flaw to 404 Media by having its reporter open links to and Yossi was able to obtain the reporter's IP address both times - even when they used a virtual private network (VPN), which is supposed to mask your location.

This vulnerability may endanger political dissidents, journalists, law enforcement officers, domestic violence victims, and other individuals that want to keep their location secret at all times.

While IP addresses do not reveal a person’s precise location, they can reveal their geographic location (country, city/city area, ZIP code). Combined with other information, this may the final data point required to pinpoint a target’s actual location.

Read more -here-


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