There are a million different ways malware can be delivered to your PC (or so it seems), yet the easiest way to spread foul files is to go phishing. It doesn't require exploiting any vulnerabilities or coding clever workarounds, and instead puts the onus on PC users to educate themselves on safe computing practices, a fundamental skill still largely in short supply. It's also the method Skype scammers are using, only the bait has changed.
Some people just can't seem to shed the notion that Microsoft is crash prone. Skype this morning posted a message on its Twitter account saying that some users may have problems signing into the VoIP service and placing calls. Naturally this opened the floodgates for users to slam Microsoft's recent announcement that it plans to acquire Skype for $8.5 billion.
Just in time for your West coast lunch break, it's a new episode of the Maximum PC No BS Podcast. Join Gordon, Nathan, Andy and Alan as they discuss Microsoft's Skype buy, the news from Google I/O, Tegra tablets, the "post PC era," the slippery electronics conspiracy, 3D transistors, and more!
Do you have a tech question? A comment? A tale of technological triumph? Just need to get something off your chest? A secret to share? Email us at email@example.com or call our 24-hour No BS Podcast hotline at 877.404.1337 x1337--operators are not standing by.
Everyone was a little flummoxed last week when Microsoft announced it had acquired Skype for a whopping $8.5 billion. The price seemed to be excessive and Microsoft to be an unlikely suitor. But today Microsoft co-founder and chairman Bill Gates has told the BBC that he advocated for the deal.
Microsoft, the world's largest software maker, announced today it has inked an agreement to purchase Skype Global for $8.5 billion in cold, hard cash. This ranks as Microsoft's biggest acquisition ever, and the Redmond software giant hopes its money will be well spent as it looks bolster its voice and video communications, and go up against Google and other rivals. Still, at $8.5 billion, the obvious questions is, did Microsoft overpay?
Google Voice. Skype. VoIP-to-PSTN providers. SIP-to-SIP calls. All of these technologies and products allow you to make calls that are either free or much cheaper than on your landline. Wouldn’t it be great if you could escape the clutches of your Telco and connect your home phone to these services? A phone server like Asterisk can help you realize this dream.
A privacy flaw in Skype's mobile application for Android could give cybercriminals access to user information from smartphones, private details such as the user's name, email address, contacts, and even chat logs, the VoIP service confirmed in a recent blog post. It's not something you should be overly concerned with, as unfettered access to cached profile information and instant messages does require the installation of a malicious third-party application, but definitely something you should be aware of, especially if you tend to install apps from outside the Android Market.
Skype might have been caught off guard by the news that their Android app was subject to a data stealing exploit, but the company has made an announcement to calm our nerves. Skype has acknowledged the issue, and is working on a fix. In the meantime, they suggest users be cautious about what apps they install.
Skype continues to make a mad dash for your living room any way it can. The latest union of Skype's VoIP service and your living room hardware comes from pairing Skype with Panasonic's Viera Cast Blu-ray player lineup, which includes the ability to make Skype video and voice calls supported by the Freetalk Conference Camera.
Skype is an awesome VoIP app. Firefox is still one of our favorite browsers. What happens when you put the two together? You get a buggy combination, Mozilla says.
"The current shipping version of the Skype Toolbar is one of the top crashers of Mozilla Firefox 3.6.13, and was involved in almost 40,000 crashes of Firefox last week," Mozilla stated in a blog post. "Additionally, depending on the version of the Skype Toolbar you're using, the methods it uses to detect and re-render phone numbers can make DOM manipulation up to 300 times slower, which drastically affects the page rendering times of a large percentage of Web content served today (plan English: to the user, it appears Firefox is slow loading Web pages)."
According to Mozilla, this constitutes a "major, user-facing issue" and meets the company's established criteria for blocking an add-on, which it's done. All versions of the Skype Toolbar, including beta releases, have been added to Firefox's blocklist.
Mozilla says this is a "soft block," meaning users are notified of what's happening and have the option of manually re-enabling the add-on. In the meantime, Mozilla said it's working with the Skype Toolbar team to "identify the issues that should be corrected, and will lift the soft block on future versions that address those issues."