Yahoo! Messenger Upgrade Cuts Off Outsiders

A mandatory upgrade to Yahoo! Messenger may leave some users in the dark. Yahoo! is upping the ante against unauthorized use of its network as a preventative measure to ward off spam and lock down its servers. As of September 24, Yahoo! is collectively retiring support for legacy versions of its IM client on all operating systems. The end result is an ounce of prevention against spammers. But customers who access the service via popular, yet unsanctioned, clients such as Trillian and Gaim will likely find themselves disconnected. A Yahoo! spokesperson was careful to point out to BetaNews that an interruption of service via third parties was not the intent of the move, simply a byproduct of ongoing improvements to its own software.

Not all customers are affected by the changes. Only users of Yahoo! Messenger versions 5.0 or older on Windows will be forced to upgrade. Additionally, Mac versions 2.0 and older, as well as 1.02 or older for UNIX will also be phased out. Late last month Microsoft restricted access to its MSN Messenger network. As of October 15, users must be running at least Windows Messenger 4.7.2009, MSN Messenger 5, or MSN Messenger for Mac OS X 3.5 in order to access the service. Third party clients also face the looming deadline. At the time of the announcement, Microsoft spokesperson Sean Sundwall told BetaNews, "Security is now the number-one feature" - a much different tune from Redmond's initial push for industry-wide IM interoperability. Microsoft is offering third party developers recourse through a licensing program for partners. However, few details have emerged on the program's terms and conditions.

News source: BetaNews

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