Home Security Skype teams up with Signal to offer encrypted chats

Open Whisper Systems, the maker of the privacy-focused Signal messaging app, will be helping Microsoft to introduce a Private Conversations feature in Skype.

The new feature will be powered by the Signal Protocol and is available for preview to Skype Insiders now.

Apart from Microsoft, WhatsApp, Google and Facebook have integrated the open-source Signal Protocol into their messaging platforms.

The content of communications on Private Conversations will be hidden in the chat list and also in notifications.

The use of Private Conversations is limited to chat on a single device at a time. The conversation can be switched to any device being used at the time but the messages sent and received will be tied to the device being used at the time.

The encryption will not be a default on Skype; users will have to select it every time they want to have a conversation that they wish to keep private.

Signal has been rated the top messaging app for those who are privacy-conscious; back in 2016, there was evidence of this when the company was unable to provide anything more than the duration of a user's membership after it received a subpoena.

The subpoena, from an assistant attorney in Virginia, demanded email addresses, history logs, browser cookie data and other information associated with two phone numbers as part of a grand jury probe.

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the sitecame into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

 

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