Monitoring the Skype: FEP, others seek answers

Microsoft needs to open up about the reliability of its Skype for confidential conversations, according to an open letter to the company posted today.
Open Letter from a variety of privacy advocates, activists, journalists, and other Internet, ask Microsoft to provide public documentation on security and privacy practices around Skype, which facilitates voice and video communications over the Internet. Microsoft has completed its acquisition of $ 8.5 billion for Skype in October 2011.
The authors of the letter said they are worried, especially about the governments have access to both Skype conversations themselves and for user data generated by these communications. Among the groups that signed the letter are the Electronic Freedom Foundation, Reporters Without Borders, the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, and Tibet Action Institute.

Many users rely on Skype for secure communications - whether militants operating in countries governed by authoritarian regimes, journalists who communicate with sensitive sources or users who wish to speak in private with confidence your partners, your family or friends.

It is unfortunate that these users, and those who advise on best safety practices, work with the persistence of vague and confusing statements regarding the confidentiality of Skype conversations, and in particular access to governments and other third party data and Skype communications.
Anxiety about how Skype can be used for listening Government heated after the acquisition of Microsoft. According to July 1, 2012 article on Slate, the pirates were alleging that a change has to be completed by the architecture of Skype could be "lawful interception" call easier to conduct.
In 2008, Skype told CNET he could not respond to requests for wiretapping "because of Skype peer-to-peer architecture and encryption techniques."
Meanwhile, Microsoft has worked to integrate Skype more closely in its product range. For example, the company expects its Windows Live Messenger instant messaging client in March, to be replaced by Skype in the world, with the exception of mainland China.
The letter asked Microsoft to release a "Transparency Report regularly updated" - similar to those published by Google - which touches these points:

Quantitative data concerning the release of information about Skype users to third parties, including the number of requests, the type of data required, and how often such requests are honored.
Specific details of all user data Microsoft and Skype currently collecting and conservation policies.
Better understanding of what Skype user data third parties may be able to intercept or retain.
Documentation regarding the operational relationship between Skype with TOM Online in China and other third parties licensed users of the Skype technology.
Skype interpretation of its responsibilities under the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA) and in response to subpoenas and national security letters (NSL).
The letter was addressed to the president of the Skype division Tony Bates, Microsoft's chief privacy officer Brendon Lynch, Microsoft and General Counsel Brad Smith.
We reached out to Microsoft for comment and will update this story when we hear back.
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