TheInquirer – Nick Farrell – Skype Reads Your BIOS – Talks To Your Motherboard When Your Dad Is Out, Too – 22 June 2013

https://i0.wp.com/www.theinquirer.net/images/logo.jpgREPORTS are coming in from eagle-eyed users who have spotted the Voice over IP outfit Skype’s software reading their BIOS and motherboard serial number.

Over here, one bloke who runs 64-bit versions of Windows, spotted a strange dialogue box which says “the program or feature “??C:Documents and SettingsMyriaLocal SettingsTemp121.com” cannot start or run due to incompatibility with 64-bit versions of Windows.”

In other words your phone is trying to run a .com file, which doesn’t work that well in Win64 because there’s no NTVDM.

Thinking that getting an unreadable executable file coming from Skype sounds interesting, he opened the file up to see what it was. It is 46 bytes long and includes the phrase

int main(void)
{ fwrite((const void far*) 0xF0000000, 1, 0xFFFF, stdout);
fwrite((const void far*) 0xF000FFFF, 1, 1, stdout);
return 0;

}

Now, as any fule kno, that is a catchy programming phrase designed to dump your system BIOS, which usually includes your motherboard’s serial number, and send it to the Skype Mothership.

The bloke was unsure what the hell Skype would want that information for. He points out that if it weren’t for that pesky Windows 64 not having an NTVDM they would have gotten away with it.

Other places it has been spotted are here and here. µ

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One response to “TheInquirer – Nick Farrell – Skype Reads Your BIOS – Talks To Your Motherboard When Your Dad Is Out, Too – 22 June 2013