Skype's social media was hacked – your user data is safe

As many of us were enjoying the celebration of yet another revolution around the sun, Skype was busy getting their accounts attacked by cyber hackers. The Syrian Electronic Army allegedly decided to break into Skype’s Twitter, Facebook, and blog pages to deliver a message that the company was spying on the public.

The hacks line up with the government surveillance programs being conducted by the United States’ National Security Agency. An issue that was first brought to light by whistleblower, Edward Snowden, found Microsoft to be one of the companies supposedly cooperating. Microsoft has released numerous statements that they and their subsidiaries (including Skype), have not been cooperating with the government’s infamous PRISM program. In fact, they have joined a consortium of tech companies suing the government over proper transparency

The tweet from the Syrian Electronic Army stated the following: “Stop spying on people! Via Syrian Electronic Army”. The tweet also included mentions to both the Official Syrian Electronic Army and the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation’s press office. And of course, it is 2014, so they included a hashtag – “#SEA”.

The Syrian Electronic Army itself is a group of individuals who support the current president of Syria; although the group itself is not publicly sanctioned by the Syrian government, they claim to act in its interest. The SEA has been known for its work in the past, such as hacking The New York Times, The BBC UK, and Twitter.

Facebook saw a similar message, but went into greater depth detailing not to use specific services from Microsoft including Hotmail/Outlook.

“Don’t use Microsoft emails (Hotmail, outlook),” the post said, “They are monitoring your accounts and selling it to the governments. More details soon. #SEA”

Skype’s personal blog also contained the same message along with a post stating “Hacked by Syrian Electronic Army… Stop Spying!” A Skype spokesperson responded to the incident and insured all Skype users that the breech was simply of the company’s social media information and not any user data.

“We recently became aware of a targeted cyber-attack that led to access to Skype’s social media properties, but these credentials were quickly reset. No user information was compromised.”

If you had heard about the incident yesterday, you can now rest safe today knowing that your data is in fact safe – Skype on Microsoft fans!

Source: TheNextWeb

Michael Archambault
  • Funny. Was their password microsoft or something similar?
  • Probably Skyp3 or something xD
  • The password was: Skype :D
  • Their password was: password.
  • And was changed now to password1
  • Nop.. It was pa$$w0rd :D
  • m1cr0s0ft
  • I am more concerned about spying, i might live in a cave soon :)
  • Please fix it Bashar Al Assad is no longer a president of Syria thanks (free Syria)
  • Let's stay on topic here. Also you might not like him but he is still the president of Syria, check the Wikipedia page.
  • since when ? and who said that ?
  • Syria. The current taint of Earth.
  • Every country in the world is the current taint of earth
  • True dat
  • Syria's the part closest the rear.
  • If someone as those SEA can hack Skype that easily, then the NSA could do it on their sleep. That speaks more about the lack of security at Microsoft than anything else. Even IF Microsoft WASN'T cooperating with the NSA (I doubt anyone in the US with brains believes an American company wouldn't cooperate with their own government let alone outside the US) they didn't apparently need to. The NSA could hack into their systems and do it even without cooperation.   I'm not that concerned as I don't do anything that could lend me into trouble. But I would appreciate if the US Government could keep their nosy filthy paws outside my computers, internet or anything that is outside the borders of the US. Me and the rest of the World, I think. And I would also appreciate if Microsoft increased their own services security.
  • They "hacked" skype's social media accounts, NOT skype's user's account info or activity, much less Microsoft's user's account info and activity. Lighten up, Francis...
  • Yes, and? It's still a breach of security. Any breach of security, specially in a company that holds personal user data, must be treated as a big deal.
    Just look at the recent Snapchat problem.
  • Please! You should be more concerned about Twitter and Facebook security. As for a blog, that hardly constitutes even coming close to hacking Skype's or MSFT's security. Let me know when something worth talking about happens.
  • So, when did Microsoft buy Twitter and Facebook?
  • The fail is in twitter not Microsoft...
  • So the fact that Facebook and Twitter were hacked reflects on the security of the Skype platform in general?
  • Their social media accs don't hold any user information.
  • Also, are you really naive enough to believe that the U.S. is alone in monitoring and tracking the internet users of the world? I'd be more concerned about those whom you haven't read news articles about yet. Maybe the " rest of the world" should start looking in their own back yards as well. Hopefully, they're not so blinded that they believe their own governments are above such tactics.
  • Its not about Microsoft security, they are a professional hacker , they hacked Facebook , LinkedIn new York times (they aren't Microsoft services so that means that Microsoft security isn't the problem.
    I think that these hackers are even better than NSA !!
  • Is Microsoft really monitoring my email and selling that information to the government? If so, I need to talk to the government about selling the rest of my information. Tax break at least? Please?
  • If they really sell it, i want at least microsoft points.
  • I got £60 worth of points from Microsoft so they can feel free to monitor all my emails. Unfortunately I send none XD
  • A free xb1?
  • I want a free Skype account and email! no, wait...
  • LOL we all know about what is going on with the NSA, just desperation here from the supporters of an asshole.
  • Title is misleading. Should say Skype is a hack! /jk
  • I saw this tweet yesterday. Doubting it got hacked, and it really is. Phew, nothing of people's personal data got to the hacker's hand. Skype, please be more concern of security.
  • In what way? Skype hasn't been hacked, Facebook and Twitter have. Oh, and a blog. I hardly think we need to be concerned.
  • Nah, I mean the way they laid out their password. Too simple probably.
  • Or perhaps, these hackers, who have hacked many sites, are skilled enough to figure out something as insignificant as a social media password.
  • Funny
  • Ok. I'll be over here waiting for SEA to hack Google-related accounts next, saying not to use Google services either because of their monitoring your activities and selling the info to the government AND advertisers...any minute now...any minute.
  • Well said. But the SEA doesn't come quietly.
  • Syrian electronic army, funded by google
  • lol, we (Syrian) got no support for any of google services not even the play-store
    so nope, i think they did it by their own
  • Haha that's a Microsoft move, not Google's.
  • Here is MS fanboy with a BLIND FAITH in MS.
  • True dat. Google fundings all the way. To easy (pr wise) to attack a old company like MSFT.
  • So, who said it's not true and they don't spying on us? (thanks to Snowden for the info's )
  • It's like Microsoft is cursed by an evil spell of unlucky!!!
  • How is Microsoft cursed when the service that was hacked was even owned by Microsoft...
  • More like they're cursed by people making a big deal out of nothing.
  • But still it's hypocrite, the truth behind this. MS talking shit about google with their scroogle, and MS shits on their users as well. NSA or advertising doesn't matter: privacy is in both areas the concern. That's why I hate the scroogled campaign so much. Fucking hypocrite.
  • Yeah, but yet, here you are, on the internet. Is the scroogled campaign the truth? The answer is a resounding yes. People acting like they're outraged by these campaigns are ridiculous. Every company uses such tactics whether openly or in the shadows. The difference is, when MSFT does it, tech journalists forget that their competitors have done likewise and it gets portrayed as some desperate situation for Microsoft. The campaign has also been reported, on numerous occasions, as having seen some success.
    Hi! I'm a PC. And I'm a Mac.
    You feel me!
  • Maybe that's normal in America, but here in the Netherlands ridiculing other brands is not a marketing method to go for. Any being with a little intelligence sees a sign of weakness in such marketing. If your own product cannot sell by just showing its strengths, and you need to lower the appeal of the competition, it's just shameful. And yes scroogle is real, but so is gov control (NSA) over any multinational. And people don't care in what manner their privat data is processed, all they are about is that it is lost, and what is done with it, is a secondary issue. So for ads or national security, won't matter. Thus the scroogled campaign is hypocrite by definition.
  • If believing that fantasy makes you feel better than enjoy. Marketing is marketing no matter where you are. You can choose to believe or not, but people and companies operate the same around the world. It's not about being hypocritical or having the best product, it's simply business. Every time you read, view or listen to an ad, do you really believe they have the best product? Because they all claim to have something better than their competitors. So, who's telling the truth? Aren't they all hypocritical or is it just Microsoft? Let me answer that for you: It's just business.
  • Blind fanboyism altert!
  • I wouldn't say that you're a blind fanboy, just blind in general!
  • Snapchat's the one that actually had user information compromised this week in an unrelated incident. This Skype "hacking" is so insignificant that its funny
  • MS is same as Google. Stealing your personal data. I think all comapines do that.  Now, we only decide which services we use on the basis of quality not privacy.  This is a lesson for privacy maniac.
  • MS is NOT the same as Google. And neither company is "stealing" anything.  All internet business collect user information. You agree to that in the fine print next to that little box you tick when you sign up on a website. The differences with what happens to that information is pretty stark between say Microsoft and Google. Google needs your information to maximize revenue. It has only one revenue stream and uses your personal information to track you and place ads wherever you go. If you're OK with that, fine. Microsoft does not need to use personal information like that and doesn't.If you are a privacy maniac, you really shouldn't be on the Internet or walking around in public. 
  • What it really comes down to is this: personal data is worth money to businesses in general. The only way to ensure TRUE privacy is to avoid using services through online accounts (Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter, etc.). Smartphones, tablets, hell even your WiFi-enabled camera has personal data connected through it (geotagging). The truth of the matter is this: privacy is never...ever guaranteed for Internet usage. IP addresses themselves are phone numbers showing Internet usage that can be accessed. Sad, but true, but are those services worth dropping for personal privacy? That's a decision only the user can make himself/herself. Pick your poison, I suppose.
  • As for this supposed "hack"? Great, you hacked a blog that has general information about the Skype interface that anyone can access on Facebook or Microsoft's web site. Woohoo! (applause) ;)
  • I think you pretty much summed it up. Well said.
  • So basically you are saying to go off the grid :-)
  • I bet most of you never care to read the article. Their accounts on Twitter, FB were hacked ffs, not data maintained by MS themselves.
  • Lol this is lame mokrosoft
  • P@ssw0rd
  • It's a shame. No one wants to use Skype anymore. I love the service and want to use it more often, but my friends prefer Facebook chat.
  • I don't care who it is, whether it be government, corporation or individual. Nobody has the right to look at my information without a valid warrant and reason; this also is true of anyone who has sold my information to the highest bidder. As far as I'm concerned the true terrorists are the NSA, Facebook, the Obama Administration, Microsoft, Apple, Google, etc. They all owe us our liberty back. I for one am sick and tired of them terrorizing me and my fellow patriots.
  • *SLAP* Wake up! They owe you nothing. If you want this lie called "freedom on Internet", feel free to get out of internet.
  • That's just ignorant to allow evil to do whatever it feels because it might be too big or too strong. Freedom isn't free. Never accepted an evil, ignorant idea like "Freedom not existing." Sometimes all that's needed is someone to fight for Freedom. All of us need to fight for it. That includes you too.
  • I wonder if zombie apocalypse has started... Damm, lot of brainless comments here. So much hate to understand or accept what was really hacked? Don't mess your thoughts between SEA's message and their action.
  • Right. So that leaves us with using gmail, ymail. I think I'll stick with outlook.
  • Read it again and slowly
    it's a twitter acount that has been hacked, look to the picture....