In the past few weeks there have been several aggressive hacking attacks performed through Skype messages via malicious links. Continue reading our article to find out more about the criminal operation. .
Dangerous Skype Attacks Wreak Havoc
There are several large-scale attacks using Skype messages that have infected a lot of computer victims. Hundreds of users of the messaging service have been affected by the dangerous campaign.
The computer criminals use malicious links that point to Baidu and LinkedIn pages. These are actually spoofed addresses that are used alongside with social engineering tricks to harvest the account credentials of the associated victim Skype profiles.
The first reported instances of the hacked accounts date as early as August 2016. The breached Skype profiles are used to send thousands of malicious messages to a variety of recipients. The harvested username and password combinations are used to fool the added contacts on the accounts. A Microsoft spokesperson stated that there is no breach reported on Skype’s systems. According to the corporation the initial account data which was used to grow the large-scale attack was done through another security incident. Security experts speculate that the most likely reason is one of the many data breaches that were reported in the last few months.
Recently Microsoft enabled the option to link the Skype account to the Microsoft login for convenience. It turns out that Microsoft has kept the original Skype account password which can be used to access the Skype service using the username itself. In some of the account breaches this method has been used to gain access to the profiles. This is easy to achieve as it bypasses any two-factor authentication that is available for the regular Microsoft accounts.
To fix the possibility of having your Skype account compromised through the regular login channel you can completely merge it with the Microsoft profile . You can follow these steps to complete the process:
- Go to the Microsoft account page. If you are already logged in, you will need to logout and sign in again
- Enter your Skype username, not your Microsoft Account email address. Use the Skype password to login to the service
- You will be prompted to sign-in and merge the two accounts
Once the process is complete Microsoft will create a Skype alias that will let you keep signing in with a Skype username. You continue to use it or disable it using the alias preferences available on the service.