EBay says Skype was not attacked

Hackers have posted attack code that may have taken down Skype, but eBay says it wasn't attacked.

Skype has not been attacked, eBay said Friday, dispelling rumors that Russian hackers took down its popular online telephony service.

For more than a day now, millions of Skype users have been knocked offline by a major service outage that has crippled the service. By Friday morning, things had improved for some users, but many were still unable to connect.

EBay attributes the outage to a problem in a Skype networking algorithm, but code has been posted to a Russian security discussion forum that could supposedly be used to knock the service offline in a DOS (denial-of-service) attack.

The code, which was published anonymously, appears to be capable of forcing Skype's servers to freeze up, said the discussion forum site's editor, Valery Marchuk, in a posting to the Full Disclosure security discussion list. "Reportedly it must have caused Skype massive disconnections," he wrote.

Not necessarily so, say researchers who looked at the code on Friday.

The code is designed to repeatedly launch Skype and overwhelm the server with information, said Andrew Storms, director of security operations with nCircle Network Security. "But I couldn't say if it would have this kind of potential DOS effect on all of Skype," he said via instant message.

The code simply would not work as advertised, said Stefano Zanero, chief technology officer with Secure Network SRL. "The attack code is fake, no doubt on that," he said via instant message. "I don't think this is the cause of whatever is happening to Skype."

EBay's Villu Arak addressed the issue directly in a Friday blog post, saying that neither hackers nor a recent technology update were to blame.

"Neither Wednesday's planned maintenance of our Web-based payment services nor any form of attack was related to the current sign-on issues in any way," he wrote.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Robert McMillan

IDG News Service
Show Comments



Sansai 6-Outlet Power Board + 4-Port USB Charging Station

Learn more >



Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?