toggle

AAPL Stock: 107.72 ( -5.04 )

Printed from http://www.macnn.com

Skype security hole could give away locations, P2P traffic

updated 05:15 am EST, Fri December 9, 2011

Skype flaw allows geo-tracking of users

Researchers have uncoveredwhat looks like a serious security flaw in Skype that could easily allow a hacker to track a user's movements as well their P2P file-sharing activity. Scientists from New York University's Polytechnic Institute monitored 10,000 random Skype users and 20 volunteers over a two-week period discovered the vulnerability. They found that callers using VoIP can obtain the IP address of another user simply by calling them allowing them to use geo-IP mapping services to determine their location and ISP.

A malicious caller could initiate a Skype call, block certain data packets and then terminate the call almost immediately to obtain their IP address without the other party even being alerted to the call with a ringtone or other notification. Worse, the hacker does not need to be on the victims contact list, while the hack can still be accomplished even when a Skype user takes the time to configure the app to block calls from non-contacts.

In one example, the scientists tracked a Skype user holidaying in New York to Chicago and then back to their homeland in France. According to the researchers, a simple an inexpensive fix could stop the hackers from making the initial discovery. Skype is said to be working on a fix.

This is not the first time that Skype users have been potentially exposed to hackers. Earlier this year, Skype users on Android were left vulnerable to a code exploit that allowed hackers to obtain a user's personal information.




by MacNN Staff

POST TOOLS:

TAGS :

toggle

Comments

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.

toggle

Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook

toggle

Most Popular

Advertisement

Recent Reviews

Blue Yeti Studio

Despite being very familiar with Blue Microphones' lower-end products -- we've long recommended the company's Snowball line of mics ...

ZTE Spro 2 Smart Projector

Home theaters are becoming more and more accessible these days, but maybe you've been a bit wary about buying a home projector. And h ...

MSI Geforce GTX 970 100ME

When Nvidia announced a new line of video cards in September 2014, many people thought things would continue to be business as usual i ...

toggle

Most Commented