A simple 8 letter unicode message can crash Skype and has to be reinstalled

Short string of simple message permanently breaks Skype app needing users to install it again

After the iPhone hack that caused millions of crashed iPhones over the weekend, there is a nasty new bug going around on the video calling App, Skype. It is an 8-letter message that can break the recipient’s app so badly they need to totally reinstall it to get things working hitch-free again.

Sending a message comprising of unicode characters “https://:” (without the quotes) crashes Skype completely. The only remedy for this situation is to reinstall Skype again according to reports. The bug works  on Windows, Android, and iOS. It does not seem to have any effect on Skype for Mac and Metro version of Skype for Windows.

The bug is caused by a failure to render the unicode characters properly. Apparently the OS X app is unscathed, as is the touch-specific version for Windows 8.1. On forums, a user writes that its teams are “aware of the problem and… working to provide an resolution.”

In the reddit thread that disclosed the bug , a user writes that “clearing chat history not helps, because when skype download chat history from server, it will crash again.” In short, the offending message will crash the app when received, and it can’t be deleted because Skype helpfully backs everything up – meaning that the app will continue to crash, forever.

Currently, the best suggestion aired in forums in order to overcome the issue is to have the person who sent you the message delete it and to re-install an older, bug-free version of Skype. Unfortunately, it has not been a good week for bugs in messaging apps.

Update : Microsoft Skype is now filtering some systems to keep out the offending message but many users are still reporting crashed Skype.

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  1. I just did this and indeed Skype crashed, but didn’t need to reinstall it, just end via task manager and start again.


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