The release of the movie Snowden today might have left you wondering if your own laptop or cellphone camera could be hacked. Well, paranoid as it sounds, it could happen. Edward Snowden brought to the world’s attention how the National Security Agency hacks into microphones and webcams of computers it has targeted and then spies on their users. You might not think you lead a life worthy of being spied on by the NSA, but there are other ways to have your personal computer security threatened. Malware can be installed by hackers who then take control of your laptop’s webcam, even when it’s turned off, to spy on you in the privacy of your home. Thankfully, it’s as easy as attaching CAMBAID over your webcam to guarantee you won’t be spied on. Slide the window open when you’d like to use the camera, and closed when you’d like some extra security.
This week, Oliver Stone releases the biopic Snowden, which critics say is his most important movie in two decades. Regardless if reviews are negative or positive, any conversations about the film are bound to include concerns about personal privacy, surveillance, spying and cybercrime.
Over the past few days, the internet’s most tech savvy commenters have been abuzz over a picture that seems to show Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s computer camera and microphone covered with tape. A keen eyed Twitter user spotted this modification on a photo that Zuckerberg posted to celebrate the growing user base of Instagram (owned by Facebook), and the image has since become viral. But what is all the fuss about, and why should you cover your laptop camera?
Paranoid about privacy or one smart cookie?
Earlier this week, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg proudly released a photograph to celebrate that Instagram (owned by Facebook) now has over 500 million users every month.
However, it wasn’t the momentous milestone that set the internet blazing. Instead, Zuckerberg’s unusual choice of MacBook modifications were what made the photo go viral. Twitter user Chris Olson was quick to notice that Mark Zuckerberg’s webcam had been covered over with black tape. The same was possibly also true of the headphone jack although that was harder to determine due to the angle of the photograph.
Laptop camera hacking is widespread these days. Even when we are not using your laptops camera they can be used by clever hackers. Our laptops are usually open and we’re not thinking about what they can see. When you have your laptop on your desk, anything your laptop camera is pointing a hacker can see. Laptop camera hacking is simple even for beginner hackers since these cameras are made to connect over the internet.