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posted by Fnord666 on Friday January 12, @04:41PM   Printer-friendly
from the in-band-signaling dept.

Skype finally getting end-to-end encryption

Since its inception, Skype has been notable for its secretive, proprietary algorithm. It's also long had a complicated relationship with encryption: encryption is used by the Skype protocol, but the service has never been clear exactly how that encryption was implemented or exactly which privacy and security features it offers.

That changes today in a big way. The newest Skype preview now supports the Signal protocol: the end-to-end encrypted protocol already used by WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Google Allo, and, of course, Signal. Skype Private Conversations will support text, audio calls, and file transfers, with end-to-end encryption that Microsoft, Signal, and, it's believed, law enforcement agencies cannot eavesdrop on.

Presently, Private Conversations are only available in the Insider builds of Skype.

Also at The Register, The Verge, and Wired.


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  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Apparition on Friday January 12, @09:17PM (3 children)

    by Apparition (6835) Subscriber Badge on Friday January 12, @09:17PM (#621565)

    Inertia, that's why.

    I've tried to convince family and friends to dump Skype and/or iMessage for a few years now, in favor of Telegram and/or Wire. Only one person has. The rest haven't. Some however have switched to Facebook Messenger, but that's even worse IMO. Why have they stuck with Skype/iMessage/Facebook Messenger? Because "everyone else uses it." If I start talking about the privacy implications and how Telegram and/or Wire has better privacy, they start looking at me like I'm a paranoid schmoe. "Who cares? I have nothing to hide."

    Privacy and encryption are great, but if no one else is there to use it...

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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 13, @01:20AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 13, @01:20AM (#621632)

    You need a front end that is more userfriendly than [Skype | iMessage], which tries to use [Signal | Telegram | Wire], but transparently drops back to [Skype | iMessage] when it has to.
    You will never get most people to switch based on what they see as tin-foil-hattery, especially if it makes things more difficult to use.
    You could get them to switch to an easier to use, more capable program, that just happens to have user-friendly encryption built in.

  • (Score: 1) by bobthecimmerian on Saturday January 13, @01:35AM

    by bobthecimmerian (6834) on Saturday January 13, @01:35AM (#621636)

    I had the same problem. But I hit on a partial solution. http://www.tristanharris.com/2016/05/how-technology-hijacks-peoples-minds%e2%80%8a-%e2%80%8afrom-a-magician-and-googles-design-ethicist/ [tristanharris.com] -- instead of convincing other people or even myself to get off hosted networks because of valid but nebulous and difficult to quantify and value concerns around privacy, consider the very real and blatantly obvious addictive designs of these tools. I got hooked on Facebook despite my ethical objections, and spent more and more time there even as I grew more lonely and miserable. I deleted all my content and left a link to that article as my only activity on the site.

  • (Score: 2) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Saturday January 13, @04:22AM

    He was the valedictorian of his high school, has a master's from Harvard, can code in fortran but cannot figure out how to use email

    So we use Facebook

    --
    127.0.0.1 www.hosted-pixel.com # I Am Absolutely Serious