July 16, 2012 at 4:00 PM ET
Skype has confirmed that — under "rare circumstances" — parts of instant message conversations made over the chat service may be forwarded to an unintended recipient.
How devastating is this issue?
A Skype spokesperson didn't elaborate beyond a pre-written statement, but based on user comments in the official Skype support forums, we can piece together what happens if you're one of the unlucky few affected by this bug.
Let's say that User A and User B are exchanging instant messages over Skype today. Tomorrow, User A might log on and find a message from User C — one of his or her contacts — asking about something that was said in that conversation. The message User C received, without any action by User A or User B, would've been a line or two from the conversation the two had.
Scary, no? Just think back to the last few instant message conversations you've had and imagine what would happen if some random lines from it were sent to a random person on your or your conversation partner's contact lists. (Now that I think about my own conversations, I suddenly want to upgrade that "scary" to a "terrifying.")
The Skype spokesperson I spoke to explained that the company is aware of the issue and will be rolling out a fix for it "in the next few days." Users will be notified that they should download an updated version of Skype once that is available.
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