This may be old news for some, but even if so, it’s worth reviewing again: when you install Skype, you are agreeing to let Skype use your computer to route other Skype users’ calls. It’s similar to the Seti arrangement. When your computer is otherwise not in use (or perhaps even when it is), Skype is using your computer’s resources to handle Skype traffic which has absolutely nothing to do with you.
It’s all laid out quite plainly in their End User License Agreement (EULA), to which you agreed if you downloaded and installed Skype on your computer. But hey, it’s a bunch of pages down, and let’s face it, who ever really reads those things, and even if you do, it’s all legal and technical mumbo-jumbo, right?
Often, yes. But that doesn’t mean you can ignore it.
So, here’s what you’ve agreed to, if you’re using Skype:
Article 4 Permission to Utilize
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4.1 Permission to utilize Your computer. In order to receive the benefits provided by the Skype Software, You hereby grant permission for the Skype Software to utilize the processor and bandwidth of Your computer for the limited purpose of facilitating the communication between Skype Software users.
4.2 Protection of Your computer (resources). You understand that the Skype Software will use its commercially reasonable efforts to protect the privacy and integrity of Your computer resources and Your communication, however, You acknowledge and agree that Skype cannot give any warranties in this respect.
“You hereby grant permission for the Skype Software to utilize the processor and bandwidth of Your computer for the limited purpose of facilitating the communication between Skype Software users.”
And, you get no warranties from Skype that they will actually protect your privacy or the “integrity of Your computer resources”.
At least now you know.
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