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Security flaw in Skype

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -   We just learned that Skype has known about a security bug that shows your IP address, which can let someone track you and your account down to the city level.  One group claims Skype has known about this for 18 months.

WBTV Cyber Expert Theresa Payton shares what she knows:

1.  A research team from Inria in France and the Polytechnic Institute of New York University tested Skype in November 2010 and found they could track users down to the city they lived in for two weeks.  The reported it to Skype.

2.  They tested the same issue again and the hole was still wide open.

3.  The researchers masked a call to Skype users and hid it from call histories as if they were never there.  The account never had to answer the hidden call for the team to get a packet back of information

4.  The "hidden call" allowed the team to pull information back about the person they called

THE ISSUE:

1.  You can track a person down to within 700 yards based on an IP address

2.  Someone could use this to track you and your whereabouts

3.  For businesses that use this, someone can track your employees' whereabouts

4.  An IP address is a handy piece to a cybercriminal's puzzle if they want to hack into your computer or device

WHAT YOU CAN DO:

1.  Complain to Skype, via it's new owner, Microsoft

2.  Use a Skype alternative such as  iChat or FaceTime, Google Voice and Video Chat, AOL chat and video, Yahoo chat and video, ooVoo, and VoxOx

3.  Keep in mind that these services will have glitches from time to time to track warnings for the product on their site as well as checking in at WBTV.com

WEB RESOURCES:

Apple Products for Chat and Video

Google Products for Chat and Video

ooVoo

VoxOx 

AOL Chat and Video

Yahoo Chat and Video

WORD FOR THE WEEK:

BO.LT/  Bolt is a new site.  It's currently invitation only.  It's a new place for you to organize and share things that you like by "bolt"-ing them onto your special bolt page.  You can actually mark and save a page, and according to the site you can save them "forever".

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