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Signal partners with Microsoft to bring end-to-end encryption to Skype
12 January 2018, 12:23 | Bernard Bryant
Signal >> Blog >> Signal partners with Microsoft to bring end-to-end encryption to Skype
During the preview, you will only be able to start private conversations with other Skype Insiders also running the latest version, and these interactions are limited to one-to-one conversations. It's based on the Signal Protocol, which powers Skype's new end-to-end encrypted Private Conversations feature.
Through the collaboration, Microsoft is introducing a private conversations feature in Skype, which is powered by the Signal protocol. Additionally, the end-to-end encryption covers chats, files/ documents, and audio messages, and not audio or video calls. If your contact failed to accept the invite by then, it will expire, and you will have to send another invite to initiate a Private Conversation.
Preview messages from Private Conversations don't show in Chats or notifications.
The EFF dinged Skype, however, on several points: for failing to provide a way to establish the identities of the contacts of the companies you were talking to, failing to provide a way to secure past communications if encryption keys were stolen, and not providing code for external review-as well as not encrypting the communications, period. After the rollout of this feature, Skype encryption will be fully secure with the secure communication channel and encrypted messages on the server. If the Private Conversation was started on one device and the user wants to more it to another device, they will need to resend the invitation to the contact using that other device.
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Today, Microsoft has confirmed that "end-to-end encryption" on Skype is coming soon.
While a host of consumer chat and calling products utilize end-to-end encryption, Skype using the technology could make it a better option for Microsoft shops operating in highly-regulated markets.
Signal is the gold standard of end-to-end encryption. You can only participate in a private conversation from a single device at a time.
The Skype version under testing right now does not support E2E encryption with Skype video calls or group chats.
Instant messaging platforms are incredibly popular these days, as anyone who's used WhatsApp, WeChat, Line, or Facebook Messenger can tell you. Having to do this every time on Skype would be more of headache than feature.
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