End-to-End Encryption Comes to Skype Through Signal Partnership

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Microsoft is testing a new "Private Conversations" feature in Skype, which is being introduced through a partnership with Signal.

Skype is using the Signal Protocol for the feature, allowing users to take advantage of strong end-to-end encryption for more secure communications.


Private Conversations are available for one-on-one conversations on Skype, with users able to initiate a private conversation by tapping on the "+" icon and then selecting "New Private Conversation." Once a conversation is initiated, it will be available only on the specific device where it was started.

Microsoft says Private Conversations offer several unique features:

  • A Private Conversation will have a lock icon next to your contact's name.
  • Preview messages from Private Conversations will not show in Chats or notifications.
  • Private Conversation capabilities are limited. You cannot edit a message or forward a file. From the chat window, only emoticons, files and audio messages are available to send.
  • Private Conversations are specific to a device. A new invitation must be sent and accepted, to change to another device.

Private Conversations are available today in a preview capacity for Skype Insiders, Microsoft's beta testing program for Skype.

Top Rated Comments

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32 months ago
I've said this a million times before and will say it again: This isn't secure end-to-end if you aren't managing your public keys. I'm frustrated with how many companies claim they have end-to-end encryption when users are blindly trusting the public keys given to them by the one entity they're trying to avoid trusting.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
32 months ago
Microsoft did secret surveillance deals with NSA, et al., years ago. Who would trust a company that sells hundreds of millions of dollars of products to governments to protect their secrets. It’s like trusting Facebook or google not to spy. The incentives are wrong.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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32 months ago
They didn’t have this already...? It’s 2018...
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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32 months ago
this is a microsoft owned company and they now only implement e2e?
you trust microsoft to honour e2e? look at win10 and say they did it for your best interest
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
32 months ago

They didn’t have this already...? It’s 2018...

I think just Skype for Business offered it previously.

It it a bit strange that Microsoft is using someone else to make it happen. Seems they should be able to do it themselves. Though I suppose this route is easier and in this day and age if something goes wrong or a loophole is found, they can just blame it on someone else and lessen the bad press for themselves.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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