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Microsoft patches bug that left Skype accounts open to attack (update)

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Skype Windows 8 stock
Skype Windows 8 stock

Russian hackers have discovered a security hole in Skype's password recovery tool that allows a third party to take control of your account. All the hackers require is your Skype username and the email address that Skype account is registered to. With those details, they'll be able to access your account and change the password in a matter of minutes. The Next Web has tested out the five-step hack and reports that the process worked across several accounts, something which we've independently confirmed. The site says it contacted Skype several hours before going public with the story.

It's worth noting that your account is only vulnerable if the would-be hacker knows your email address. If you're worried that your address may be common knowledge, the simplest way to protect yourself from any attack would be to change the address your account is registered with. We've spoken to Skype, which says that it is currently looking into the issue.

Update: After temporarily removing the ability to reset passwords while it worked on a solution, Skype has now issued a fix for the security bug. The company also issued the following statement:

"Early this morning we were notified of user concerns surrounding the security of the password reset feature on our website. This issue affected some users where multiple Skype accounts were registered to the same email address. We suspended the password reset feature temporarily this morning as a precaution and have made updates to the password reset process today so that it is now working properly. We are reaching out to a small number of users who may have been impacted to assist as necessary. Skype is committed to providing a safe and secure communications experience to our users and we apologize for the inconvenience."