“Stop spying on people!” That was the primary message of the tweet sent via the official Skype Twitter account around 3 p.m. Wednesday. It’s no surprise that this was no Skype-sanctioned tweet, and its senders — the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) — took full credit in what remained of the 140 characters, even flagging the FBI to the hack. Similar messages were also posted on Skype’s company Facebook page and website blog.
Skype, the popular internet-calling service owned by Microsoft, was implicated in documents leaked over recent months by Edward Snowden, which noted that the National Security Agency is able to eavesdrop on video calls. Another tweet and blog post sent a short time later, also allegedly by the SEA, warned against using Microsoft accounts: “They are monitoring your accounts and selling the data to the governments.” The tweets were removed within an hour and Skype has since disabled access to its blogs.
The SEA, supposedly run by supporters of Syrian President Bashar Assad, has taken credit for some high-profile hacks over past months. The Financial Times, CBS and E! News are just a few of the media organizations who’ve seen their Twitter accounts accessed illegally, allegedly by the SEA. In April, the group took credit for a tweet sent over the official Associated Press Twitter account that claimed there had been an explosion at the White House — news that sent such evident shockwaves that the U.S. stock market dipped momentarily.
Microsoft and Skype haven’t as yet commented on Wednesday’s hack.