Published: Fri, January 12, 2018
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

Skype is testing new 'private conversations' with end-to-end encryption

Skype is testing new 'private conversations' with end-to-end encryption

During the preview, users only will be able to start private conversations with other Skype Insiders using the latest preview version, and interactions will be limited to one-to-one conversations. The comms biz was part of the NSA's PRISM surveillance network, which punted emails, chat logs, VoIP traffic, files transfers, and other private stuff at the American intelligence agency - and Microsoft was a founding member of PRISM back in 2007. Once the contact accepts your invite, the Private Conversation will be available to you only on that specific device. In an announcement, both Microsoft and Signal have announced a partnership to begin testing end-to-end encryption for Skype Insiders through a new "Private Conversations" feature. If you want to move it to another phone or computer, you will have to resend the invitation. It could also make Skype a strong tool for remote workers who regularly need to discuss sensitive issues with colleagues. You can do that by right-clicking on the conversation and selecting Delete chat. You will receive a confirmation window to end the conversation.

Preview messages from Private Conversations will not show in Chats or notifications.

A Private Conversation will have a lock icon next to your contact's name. Now these conversations are limited to two people at a time.

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At this point, it's unclear as to what plans Skype has to roll out Private Conversations to the general public, but you can join the Skype Insider program here. You can not edit a message or forward a file.

Bear in mind that only a single device can be used with each conversation, the post said.

If Microsoft gives the go-ahead and E2E support lands in the Skype stable release, all of today's major IM platforms will be supporting encrypted conversations as optional, non-default features.

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