an open question to Skype’s Josh Silverman

Mr. Silverman, you wrote in a post regarding TOM Online in collusion with Chinese authority to spy on and censor Skype users:

Skype-to-Skype communications are, and always have been, completely secure and private.

First, it’s my understanding that Skype is proprietary software (and not semi-free software). Please correct me if I’m mistaken. If this is true, how can users come to know that their Skype-to-Skype communications are, and always have been, completely secure and private, given that they are not privy to Skype’s source code?


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3 Responses to “an open question to Skype’s Josh Silverman”

  1. Lin Says:

    I think he’d say that if the source code was public then Skype wouldn’t be able to protect the users. And I don’t think the Skype was “spying” on users, just censoring them.

  2. Jay Says:

    It doesn’t matter, looks like skype is going open source!

  3. Peter Says:

    Lin, in order to censor users the software must become aware of what information is being transferred. Becoming aware of what is being transferred is a form of spying when the user wishes the software did not do that. As well, I doubt Josh would be daft enough to argue for security through obscurity (though who knows). The best way to protect users is to give users the freedom to protect themselves.

    Jay, from what I’m reading, only part of the client will become Open Source. The underlying protocols are not. Therefore, although it doesn’t hurt to be more open and though it may be a step in the right direction, the news is rather meaningless otherwise.

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