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Topic: Skype and your inabilty to permanenlty delete your Skype accoutn
Message: Posted by: Turk (Aug 20, 2014 06:41PM)
Hello, All.

As part of my efforts to finally come into the 21st Century, I was thinking about opening up a Skype account. When I went onto Wilkipedia, I discovered two things that immediately have me troubled, to-wit:

1. Microsoft purchased Skype in 2011 for (i think) 8.5 billion dollars. Having a bad experience in trying to cancel a Hotmail account (also owned by Microsoft) and discovering the Terms of Service at that time would not allow a cancellation of my Hotmail account (until a period of 90 (60?) days of uninterrupted non-use of Hotmail had occurred). And now knowing that Microsoft now owns Skype, I wanted to determine under what conditions I could cancel out of Skype if I later discovered that I did not like Skype.

2. Imagine my surprise to learn from both Wikipedia (and the linked Skype URL reference) that a person cannot completely delete his Skype account!!! The Skype deletion page advises, in part, that:

"First, you should know that it is not possible to completely delete a Skype account. If you want
your data to be removed from the Skype directory, you will need to contact the Skype Customer
service."


So my questions for all you techies are this:

1. What is the ramification of not being able to completely delete you Skype account?
2. What information on you is still retained by Skype ...and more importantly, how is it used?
3. By having your Skype account not being completely deleted, is your information now perpetually able to be sold to 3rd parties (such as spammers)?
4. And, will any such permanently retained personal information be forever out of your control and follow you...even if you change email addresses?
5. And, [b]if you contact "the Skype Customer service", [i]will they be able and willing to completely delete your Skype account...including the information attached to your Skype user name[/i] (which, independently, might not be able to be deleted from Skype)? Specifically, if you contact "Skype Customer service", will they then, in fact, honor your request and completely delete you Skype account and all of your personally submitted personal information..including your Skype username[/b]?

I'm really trying to assess the risk/reward benefit of signing up with for a "free" Skype account that ostensibly might never ever be able to be permanently deleted.

Thanks for any info in these regards.

Mike
Message: Posted by: balducci (Aug 20, 2014 09:28PM)
I've never worried about deleting free accounts. I just stop using them.

As long as the account does not have my banking accounts information or any other private information, I do not see a risk.

What am I missing?
Message: Posted by: landmark (Aug 20, 2014 10:39PM)
FYI and FWIW:

There's a direct feed from Skype to the NSA on all Skype calls, including the video.
That's evidently with Microsoft's consent.

Who gets to hold onto that data--well that's another very interesting question.

That said, I just finished a one hour call on Skype...
Message: Posted by: Turk (Aug 20, 2014 11:26PM)
[quote]On Aug 20, 2014, balducci wrote:
***
What am I missing? [/quote]

Hi, balducci,

I don't know what, if anything, you might or might not be missing.

My question is simple: Why can't a person be able to completely close his Skype account? What is the rationale for Skype not allowing (or being able to let?) a person completely close his Skype account? And, since the account is not completely closed, what residual information remains in a Skype account that is not completely closed?

My concerns may be unwarranted, but, until I can understand [i]why[/i] a person cannot completely close his Skype account, scenarios of imagined potential abuse (including the potential for hacking into that open information) rear their ugly head in my mind

Hence, my reaching out to the Café membership in the hope that some Café member knowledgeable in the myriad of IT disciplines, can shed some light on this Skype situation...and, by so doing, allay my concerns.
Message: Posted by: balducci (Aug 20, 2014 11:41PM)
[quote]On Aug 21, 2014, Turk wrote:
[quote]On Aug 20, 2014, balducci wrote:
***
What am I missing? [/quote]

Hi, balducci,

I don't know what, if anything, you might or might not be missing.

My question is simple: Why can't a person be able to completely close his Skype account? What is the rationale for Skype not allowing (or being able to let?) a person completely close his Skype account? And, since the account is not completely closed, what residual information remains in a Skype account that is not completely closed?
[/quote]
What does a completely closed account mean to you? That is a rhetorical question, you need not respond.

I am thinking that even if an account is completely closed so far as you are aware (i.e. account deleted / disabled, login blocked), any information you ever entered will almost certainly still be stored somewhere on that company's computer network. Hence, still be available for potential abuse. Like when I close a bank account, I'm pretty sure the bank still has records of all my transactions in that account.

Anyway, I hope you find a solution to alleviate your concerns.
Message: Posted by: Salguod Nairb (Aug 20, 2014 11:54PM)
Just limit the information you put on your profile. My contacts know who I am so there is no need to list information on myself. It is linked to my hotmail account, but that profile is also very limited.
Message: Posted by: imgic (Aug 21, 2014 12:07AM)
I've got a skype account and it's been a great valuable asset. I've done job interviews, talked with family, did PhD work. ( including presenting my dissertation proposal) and more. I have the bare minimum on my profile and never have any spam or third party emailing me. I haven't used it in the last few months...but guess I side within Balducci. As long as there's no banking info, and you have different password for Skype than your other accounts, I don't see the risk.
Message: Posted by: landmark (Aug 21, 2014 07:11AM)
Imgic, did you make those calls in a public place where people could overhear your call?
If so, and you didn't mind that people could hear you, then there's nothing to worry about.
If you had some expectation of privacy however, your expectation was not correct.
Message: Posted by: imgic (Aug 21, 2014 01:00PM)
I've never skyped in public...for same reason I try to avoid making calls in public, I feel it's a bit obnoxious. But wouldn't expect any privacy in public.

Heck, given NSA I don't expect privacy anytime online. That's how comeust times I mask my id as a 14 year old female gymnast who's thinking of running away from home. It's so far off the truth nobody suspects who it really is. And as an added bonus nice people keep sending me airfare and travel money....
Message: Posted by: landmark (Aug 21, 2014 04:47PM)
So you're the one who took my money! Can I at least watch you do a backflip?