What would you do if someone had control of your webcam without your knowledge?
It’s a maddening thought, really, and one that I don’t particularly enjoy dwelling on.
It would be one of the greatest violations of privacy, even more so than voicemail hacks and RFID hacks. Unfortunately, like most technological advancements, they can be twisted and abused to do things they were never meant to do.
Someone could be watching you through your webcam right now.
Chances are you’re safe so don’t freak out, but you should be aware that the possibility exists.
There was a time when webcam hacking wasn’t a mainstream thing, but times have changed and nowadays it’s a real threat that’s being put to the microscope thanks to spying programs like PRISM.
If you have a webcam, it would behoove you to listen up.
But a hacked webcam becomes a spy tool that voyeurs can exploit for their own gain.
There are a few different kinds of webcam hacks that have occurred over the past few years, but the general procedure is to find a security vulnerability (whether in the software that controls a webcam or the hardware itself) and take advantage of it in any way that doesn’t alert the victim to its use. One technique, known as , manipulates the rendering of a website to make it so that the Flash permission prompt becomes invisible.The website then places this invisible prompt over a likely-to-be-clicked section such as the Play button on a video.Suddenly, the victim thinks all they’re doing is watching a video, but has inadvertently given permission to the Flash app to start taking pictures.Clickjacking can be an issue with the app protocol itself OR with the browser you’re using to view the said app.Some browsers, like Chrome, keep on top of these vulnerabilities and repair them as quickly as possible, but sometimes the issue can go unnoticed for a long time.Other times, the issue may appear to be fixed only to be rediscovered by exploiting some other vulnerability.