Is it ok to leave my mic plugged in?

Discussion in 'UK VOIP' started by Gavin X, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. Gavin X

    Gavin X Guest

    I'm very new to VOIP. (I signed up with Skype yesterday.)

    Are there any potential privacy problems if I leave Skype running
    and my PC mic is plugged in.

    I mean is there a real chance of some clever hacks which someone
    might use to listen in on my PC mic without me realising?
    Gavin X, Jan 8, 2010
    #1
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  2. Gavin X

    Chris Davies Guest

    Gavin X <> wrote:
    > Are there any potential privacy problems if I leave Skype running
    > and my PC mic is plugged in.


    Yes, potentially, but probably not.


    > I mean is there a real chance of some clever hacks which someone
    > might use to listen in on my PC mic without me realising?


    You won't know until it's too late.
    Chris
    Chris Davies, Jan 8, 2010
    #2
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  3. Gavin X

    Graham. Guest

    "Gavin X" <> wrote in message news:...
    > I'm very new to VOIP. (I signed up with Skype yesterday.)
    >
    > Are there any potential privacy problems if I leave Skype running
    > and my PC mic is plugged in.
    >
    > I mean is there a real chance of some clever hacks which someone
    > might use to listen in on my PC mic without me realising?


    It depends on how paranoid you are. Sure, it's possible. Even
    if you didn't have a VoIP application on your computer someone
    like Gary McKinnon could use one of his Pearl scripts to deploy
    one that runs stealthfully. Most laptops have a built in mic that can't
    be physically disconnected easily, ditto webcam.

    Goodness me, I'm getting worried now...

    --
    Graham.

    %Profound_observation%
    Graham., Jan 9, 2010
    #3
  4. Gavin X

    Ivor Jones Guest

    On 10/01/10 14:14, Dave wrote:
    >
    >
    > "Graham." <> wrote in message
    > news:hi8h0a$oia$-september.org...
    >>
    >>
    >> "Gavin X" <> wrote in message
    >> news:...
    >>> I'm very new to VOIP. (I signed up with Skype yesterday.)
    >>>
    >>> Are there any potential privacy problems if I leave Skype running
    >>> and my PC mic is plugged in.
    >>>
    >>> I mean is there a real chance of some clever hacks which someone
    >>> might use to listen in on my PC mic without me realising?

    >>
    >> It depends on how paranoid you are. Sure, it's possible. Even
    >> if you didn't have a VoIP application on your computer someone
    >> like Gary McKinnon could use one of his Pearl scripts to deploy
    >> one that runs stealthfully. Most laptops have a built in mic that can't
    >> be physically disconnected easily, ditto webcam.
    >>
    >> Goodness me, I'm getting worried now...
    >>
    >> --
    >> Graham.
    >>
    >> %Profound_observation%
    >>

    >
    > And your cell phone - that can also turned on, along with the camera ! -
    > ALL without you knowing !


    The black helicopters are hovering as we speak.........


    Ivor
    Ivor Jones, Jan 11, 2010
    #4
  5. Gavin X

    Ivor Jones Guest

    On 11/01/10 12:27, Dave wrote:
    >
    >
    > "Ivor Jones" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> On 10/01/10 14:14, Dave wrote:


    [snip]

    >>> And your cell phone - that can also turned on, along with the camera ! -
    >>> ALL without you knowing !

    >>
    >> The black helicopters are hovering as we speak.........
    >>
    >>
    >> Ivor
    >>

    >
    > Yep, It can be done for 'tactical monitoring' - remove the battery !
    >
    > Dave.


    Not without a specially modified phone, it can't. Cite proof.

    Ivor
    Ivor Jones, Jan 19, 2010
    #5
  6. On 09/01/2010 00:08, Gavin X wrote:
    > I'm very new to VOIP. (I signed up with Skype yesterday.)
    >
    > Are there any potential privacy problems if I leave Skype running
    > and my PC mic is plugged in.
    >
    > I mean is there a real chance of some clever hacks which someone
    > might use to listen in on my PC mic without me realising?




    I don't know about all the scare stories of security services watching
    over us.
    But one thing hapenned here a couple of weeks ago. I saw my niece's
    skype was online and clicked to place a video call. Up came her video. I
    could see her typing on her computer and hear the clicks as she typed.
    She couldn't hear me. This went on for a couple of minutes until I
    figured out the reason she couldn't hear me ( I had left my skype set
    to external mike instead of the camera mike). She was completely unaware
    that I could see her. I should add that she is not at all computer savvy
    (obviously!), just a typical teenager.

    I can only guess as to how this occurred. I suppose she had accidently
    clicked on the accept incoming call button.
    But it certainly makes you beware.
    Salvador Freemanson, Feb 4, 2010
    #6
  7. Gavin X

    mistergman

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2012
    Messages:
    1
    Newest Skype version 5.9 suspected of privacy flaw

    In the last couple of days have occurred 2 alarming incidents:

    1. While on a Skype call with a friend, another friend called. I took the call while putting the first call on hold. After I ended the second call and resumed the previous call, conversation between my other friend's wife and him bled into the original call. We were both puzzled at what we were hearing and I was able to recognize who was talking. I told my first caller that this was not a good thing and that I would terminate and restart the call. This eliminated the bleed-through. I reported the event to my second caller friend later.

    2. Yesterday, my friend who was the second caller in the previous incident called me twice. I declined each call as I was already on another call on my land-line phone. After several minutes I got a Skype voice mail notification. When I checked there was a voice mail left exactly 10 minutes in duration. It turned out to be a very serious conversation between my friend and his wife and certainly meant to be private. I verified with my friend that he terminated both call attempts.

    This is very serious and suspicious behavior. I am a very experienced computer user with over a 25 year career in IT.

    Whether the malfunctions were accidental via a software bug or design or something more sinister cannot be determined but I thought it important to log the incidents in a public forum.

    I personally love and hate Skype at the same time. The software and service has no real competitor. I am also a paying customer with both outbound and inbound subscriptions.

    I find the Skype team mindset to be arrogant and incompetent. Software releases are frequently fraught with serious bugs and radical interface design changes. Updates are forced against user's control. Many forums capture users expressing that Skype is the most inconsiderate software in use today. Forced updates, the software frequently popping up in the middle of other things you may be doing, shoving Facebook down our throats and update releases consistently flawed.

    I am convinced that Skype software has, or could easily have, the ability to activate one's camera and/or microphone without our knowledge and capture and record the input. Whether it is unintentional or by design I cannot substantiate. However, these incidents DID occur and I wanted the user community to know about them.

    SKYPE PRIVACY ALERT MICROPHONE CAMERA ACTIVATION
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2012
    mistergman, Apr 28, 2012
    #7
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