SkyDrive Security Issues: Sharing from SkyDrive in Outlook.com mail is still not safe


Are you using Share through SkyDrive option for sending attachments in your Hotmail or Outlook.com mail? Read this article to learn a serious security concern involved in this.

SkyDrive is a very useful cloud storage system for backing up and sharing your files. Microsoft has integrated SkyDrive with Outlook.com, making it easy for you to share large files with the email recipients. When you compose an email, you have an option to "Share from SkyDrive" instead of actually uploading and attaching the file to your email. However, you must be aware that this comes with a serious security concern.

When you share a file from SkyDrive to your email recipient, the file becomes "shared through link", even if it was not shared earlier. You may not see any warning or notice regarding this, but in reality, you are changing the sharing settings of the file when you send it to the email recipient.

SkyDrive Security Issues

Leave aside the problem of inadvertently sharing the file. The bigger security issue is, when the recipient receives the email and opens the file in his computer, the direct link of the file gets added to the browser's browsing history. Even after the recipient signs out of his email, anyone else looking at that computer can see the direct link to access the file. This means, your file is accessible to unintended users. Modern browsers suggest URLs from the history when the user start typing something in the Omnibox and it is possible that the browser will offer your sensitive document to someone else!

I had reported this problem with Hotmail about two years ago. However, even after rebranding to Outlook.com, Microsoft has taken no steps to fix this SkyDrive security problem, other than changing the menu option from "Save files on SkyDrive" to "Share from SkyDrive". (The new menu option includes the word "Share" in it, which is slightly better since it gives a feeling that you are actually sharing the file, even though you are sharing it to anyone who gets the link and not just to the recipient of email.)

Read my report regarding Security concerns in SkyDrive Hotmail integration, which I wrote 2 years ago. Also, you read our report on comparison of Microsoft SkyDrive and Google Drive.



Article by Tony John
Tony John is a professional blogger from India, who started his first Weblog in 1998 at Tripod.com. Tony switched to blogging as a passion blended business in the year 2000 and currently operates several popular web properties including IndiaStudyChannel.com, Techulator.com, dotnetspider.com and many more.

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Comments

Guest Author: Tushar18 Feb 2015

This article is really important for those users who are using the SkyDrive online application for sharing the data. Have you received any response from Hotmail on this sharing security related query?



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