Skype's Twitter, Facebook and blog sites compromised by Syrian Electronic Army [Update]

The year 2014 is starting out on a sour note for the Skype team at Microsoft. Their official Twitter account was compromised by the group that calls itself the Syrian Electronic Army, with a message that seems to allege that the VoIP service spies on its many users.

The Twitter account, which has over 3 million followers, was broken into earlier this afternoon with two messages from the group. The first asks Skype to "stop spying on people", while the other simply posted the symbol of the group with the message "Syrian Electronic Army Was Here". The SEA claims to be a supporter of Syria's President Bashar al-Assad but it's unknown if the group has any official ties with the Syrian government.

While both posts were live for the better part of an hour earlier today, they have since been taken down. We have emailed Microsoft to get a comment on this newest attack on a major Twitter account and will update the story when they send a statement.

Update: Skype's Facebook page and blog site were also hit by the SEA; while the Facebook account has been restored, the Skype blog is still showing the effects of the cyber attack with a defacement of the page.

Update 2: Skype's Twitter account has been broken into again with more messages:

Update 3: Skype's Twitter account now seems to be back in Microsoft's control with the company posting the following message:

Source: Skype on Twitter 1 and 2 | Images via Twitter

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30 Comments

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trojan_market said,

and google doesn't sell Users info to chinese or any other government?

Well, you tell: do they?

Is there anything in there about Google selling users' data to the Chinese or any other Government? Because I can't find it.

The most similar item would be complying with Government's requests, which would be no different to any other company since they are all subject to the same laws.

Nothing about selling anything though, but interestingly there's a remark about Google not complying with Chinese requests for user's personal info (which along with the censorship issues ultimately led Google to pull from mainland China).

If that's all the proof I guess the answer to my question would be "no".

you are trying to say that Microsoft gives user's info to government and google doesn't? all my point is that if one company is notorious for giving the user's information up, that is google not Microsoft. because that's their business model. use information and make money. what's the difference? use information to sell ads or give it to a government or both.

trojan_market said,
you are trying to say that Microsoft gives user's info to government and google doesn't?

I'm not trying to say anything, just asking you to support your claims with facts.

trojan_market said,
all my point is that if one company is notorious for giving the user's information up, that is google not Microsoft. because that's their business model. use information and make money. what's the difference? use information to sell ads or give it to a government or both.

Giving and/or selling user information is not Google's business model. If it was you'd have third parties using that information to run their own targeted advertising business at the expense of Google's data.

Eg. Microsoft, Yahoo or Apple wouldn't need to collect user information to run their own targeted advertising business if they could just get it from Google.

google is a giant advertisement company plus search giant. it might be illegal to sell user's information without their consent but if it would be google would have done it. look how they stabbed oracle from behind for java. and yes if you read it says they had some deals with Chinese government to block some sites in order to get to China. I probably don't have evidence to show you but profile wise, google is that type of company. again, the only thing they created is page ranking and index algorithm for search and that's it. all other things they did was rip-off and purchase of this and that. I emphasize again they don't sell products, they sell ads. hope you get it.

trojan_market said,
it might be illegal to sell user's information without their consent but if it would be google would have done it.

Maybe, I don't know, but it wouldn't make much sense. As I said before selling user data would go straight against their core business.

Hence if you were to go with wild speculations about companies willing to sell user data, Google might probably be the less likely to do it (and not out of any kind of moral stance but plain business interests).

Still baseless speculation in any case, which was my point.

trojan_market said,

look how they stabbed oracle from behind for java.

As long as the ruling about APIs not being copyrightable stands I don't see the problem.
Google has never stated or intended Dalvik to be a Java VM implementation and as such it doesn't infringe in the same licensing issues Microsoft had with Sun years ago.

Oracle had two issues with Google about this:
-Copyright for some test classes that were removed (not sure if Google had to pay damages, but they are no longer in dalvik so the issue is resolved)
-API copyrightablity, which so far has been ruled to not be so.

trojan_market said,

and yes if you read it says they had some deals with Chinese government to block some sites in order to get to China.

So did (and do) every company operating there.

Unlike all those other companies, though, Google moved out of mainland to Hong Kong and stopped collaborating with Govenment censorship.

It's kinda ironic that the company that pulled out gets all the heat instead of those that are still in there.

trojan_market said,

I probably don't have evidence to show you but profile wise, google is that type of company. again, the only thing they created is page ranking and index algorithm for search and that's it. all other things they did was rip-off and purchase of this and that. I emphasize again they don't sell products, they sell ads. hope you get it.

So you don't like Google, that much is clear.

Not to argue your opinion of Google as you are entitled to it, but you could take a look at their projects at Google[x] to see some of the stuff they develop besides page rank.

They are also one of the largest hardware manufacturers, producing custom designs for most of their servers and network gear.

The weird thing is the political and access aspect to where this group comes from.

Their government buys information from Google, including GVoice data.

Could this be why they don't want people using Outlook/Hotmail/Skype?

Mobius Enigma said,

Their government buys information from Google, including GVoice data.

Would you have any proof of that, by any chance?

Such statement sound little bit crazy. I would say they targeted skype because its the most popular Video chat and VoIP tool. probably used against bashar al asad's reporting his crimes all over along with youtube.

trojan_market said,
Such statement sound little bit crazy. I would say they targeted skype because its the most popular Video chat and VoIP tool. probably used against bashar al asad's reporting his crimes all over along with youtube.

Or maybe it's somewhat random (say, for the lulz). Just because they claim to support al-Assad doesn't mean that they are directed or instrumental to the government objectives.

Last year they also hacked The Onion's twitter account.

Mobius Enigma said,

About this group specifically, nope.

Not about the group, proof about the "their government buys information from Google, including GVoice data".

In other news, the Syrian Electronic Army spied on the computers of Skype employee's. They claim they are against spying/NSA stuff but they do it themselves. Oh the irony..

Hussam Al-tayeb said,
You would be praising them if it didn't have the word "Syrian" in it though

I don't mind all the spying going on, I'm not reading my private content on the web right now so if they keep it a secret too then I'm fine with it.

That doesn't mean everyone here can now go ahead and look on my computer..

Really..........strong stuff coming from a group that supports a dictator,kinda makes you wonder why they dont get their head out of their bovine donkey and smell the roses