Skype Injects Code Into Your Website

April 3, 2013

Here’s something to watch out for if you have the Skype browser button. If you use a content management system to edit your website and happen to have phone numbers on the page you are editing, it’s possible that a whole bunch of Skype code will be injected in around each phone number.

It’s not a big deal to strip it out if you’ve only got one or two numbers on a page, but if you have a page full of worldwide agents and each of their phone numbers get the Skype code treatment it’s a real headache to get rid of. So before editing any pages containing phone numbers, switch off the Skype browser button.

Personally it find the idea of an application taking control of web pages and inserting it’s own code before displaying them to be a bit intrusive. Surely web pages should be displayed the way the site owner wants them to be shown.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Jeet April 27, 2013 at 4:12 am

Wow, I didn’t notice this earlier. Skype does highlight any phone numbers on web pages and allows you to make a call right from the page. But I didn’t know they also change code in text area and text boxes. I have tried numbers in wordpress and didn’t see this. Which CMS did you try? Was it using an fckeditor or plain textarea?

Dave April 27, 2013 at 11:57 am

The CMS was Joomla. I think I had set it to use JCE as the text editor. The Skype toolbar wasn’t on my machine though, it was on my client’s and when they edited the page the code got added.

japh August 18, 2013 at 3:16 pm

Thanks for this post. Yeah. This is really true. :-) Not a good feature of skype.

Elisabeth Bertrand September 3, 2013 at 9:20 pm

Actually I have searching and searching for someone else who has noticed this. It’s a really big problem for me because its basically taken over fields in my database which didnt even have any phonenumbers in it. In fact I probably have over 700 fields which are desecrated by Skype code. The Skype worm especially likes to take up empty fields so you won’t see it if you never check the html code in seemingly empty fields.

In my case its going to cost me time and money to clean this all up.
As I have many collegues using my CMS system I can’t always control if they have the Skype toolbar on or off (apparently this is what may cause this). I actually only realized this was happening after I coincedently downloaded a flatfile of my data.

I dont think this is legal, in fact I have been writing them registered mail and emails and letters and they just arent answering me.

So you think I should have to pay to have this cleaned?

But the bigger question:

Don’t I have any control over what goes into my own database and website anymore? By using Skype did I unknowingly invite them in to set up house in my database?

I’d really like to kow if anybody else has noticed this.

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