Skype Security Is Borked And Hard To Fix

Microsoft Skype Messenger

Once installed, Skype uses its own built-in updater to keep the software up to date. German security researcher Stefan Kanthak has discovered the vulnerability and it seems that the issue can not be patched easily and will require a " large code revision", this means that you will need to wait for the next update in order for the issue to be fixed. The bug works because the malicious DLL is found first when the app searches for the DLL it needs.

Kanthak told ZDNet Monday that Microsoft was informed of the bug back in September.

"Windows provides multiple ways to do it", cautioned Kanthak, while referring to DLL hijacking. Although the attack vector has been demonstrated using the Windows version of Skype, Kanthak said he believes that the same DLL hijacking method could also be applied to Skype versions for macOS and Linux as well.

The result, if exploited would mean that an ordinary user account would get all the privileges of a SYSTEM user.

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"'System" is "administrator' on steroids", he added. Microsoft answered him that addressing this security issue would require "a large code revision", which is why the company plans to fix it "in a newer version of the product rather than a security update".

The cybercriminals will get access to the computer and they can steal data stored on the system since the attacker would have obtained the same rights as the logged-in user. Skype UWP app is not affected by this vulnerability. Microsoft said that its engineers were able to replicate the issue and that a fix would come in a new version of Skype and not a security update. Microsoft says it has put "all resources" on building a new client.

If there's a reason why you've never made anyone a SYSTEM user, it's because you can't, you shouldn't, and heaven help you if you do.

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