The video calling service Skype recently made a change to how it routes calls. Yawn, right? But here's where it get a little juicier: Hackers and bloggers are saying
the changes, which push some of the video calling process onto Skype's own computers instead of onto random machines on the Internet, could help the app spy on users' calls, presumably at the request of a court or government.
The problem? It's unclear what exactly changed, and a Skype spokesman contacted by CNN for clarification would not release more than a pre-written statement.
Chaim Haas, the spokesman, would not say, for instance, if the update actually enabled the company to tap into and record Skype calls. He also would not answer questions about when the update took place or whether wiretapping was a motive.
"As part of our ongoing commitment to continually improve the Skype user experience, we developed supernodes, which can be located on dedicated servers within secure datacenters," the statement from Skype says. "This has not changed the underlying nature of Skype's peer-to-peer (P2P) architecture, in which supernodes simply allow users to find one another (calls do not pass through supernodes).
"We believe this approach has immediate performance, scalability and availability benefits for the hundreds of millions of users that make up the Skype community."