Sunday, July 18, 2004

Instant Messaging (IM) snooping

If you use Instant Messaging (IM) you might just be interested in the IM Watching service. Especially if you are one of the bad guys.

Record and analyze anybody's IM presence.

Most Instant Messenger users broadcast when they sign on, sign off, go idle, and flag themselves as away. This presence information is typically innocuous, useful for knowing if your buddies are available to chat. But when monitored continuously, over long time periods, those few signals tell a lot. This website lets you record and analyze anybody's IM activity. First, create an account and enter a personal list of buddies to watch. The IMWatching service then starts recording when each buddy is offline, idle, active, and away. As the data accumulate, check back here to see many reports, including:

a graphical summary of their recent activity,
which buddy spends the most time online,
when a buddy typically first signs on each day, and
what time your friend signed off last night.
To see more right now, try our demo account.

This, combined with some other monitoring techniques, might be handy for a terrorists, kidnapper or other bad guys.

Hat tip Just another pane in the glass

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