Feeds

Skype slurping software threatens IP exposure

It's a P2P problem says Redmond subsidiary

High performance access to file storage

Code posted online that can skim the last known IP address of users is being checked out by Skype as a possible security flaw.

The software, posted on Pastebin, works on a patched version of Skype 5.5 and involves adding a few registry keys that allow the attacker to check the IP address of users currently online without calling them. Services like Whois will then give some other details on the city, country, internet provider and/or the internal IP-address of the target.

"I've tested this and it does what it says on the tin," blogged Nick Furneaux, MD of security researchers CSITech. "I was able to extract the external and internal IP's of a friend in the US to within a few miles of his house, a buddy in Asia to within a few streets and my own to just a few miles down the road. More concerningly the internal IP combined with the internet facing address provides the basis for a direct probe and then attack of any individual on Skype's global address book."

He said a website had been set up to provide an easier way to exploit the IP tracking but that it hadn't yet been checked out for malware. The site is down at present.

Before everyone panics, it is not clear if the problem affects the current corporate build of Skype or just the deobfuscated build mentioned in the posting. Skype, and presumably Microsoft given the amount of integration Redmond is planning with its code base, are no doubt hoping it's the latter situation. In any case, simply turning off the software when you're not using it minimizes any threat window.

"We are investigating reports of a new tool that captures a Skype user’s last known IP address," Adrian Asher, director of product security at Skype told El Reg in an emailed statement. "This is an ongoing, industry-wide issue faced by all peer-to-peer software companies. We are committed to the safety and security of our customers and we are taking measures to help protect them." ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts
Bloke behind the cockup says not enough people are helping crucial crypto project
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
German space centre endures cyber attack
Chinese code retrieved but NSA hack not ruled out
NSA denies it knew about and USED Heartbleed encryption flaw for TWO YEARS
Agency forgets it exists to protect communications, not just spy on them
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.