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Preventing Remote Access to Webcams

Does your computer have a camera as one of the features? A web cam can be a great way to stay in touch with loved ones or friends faraway using free programs like Skype. Have you ever wondered if someone can remotely activate your computer webcam without your knowledge?

It has happened before. According to Cnet dot com, “Web cam Spy case” in the Lower Merion School District near Philadelphia has raised concern as to whether others with Webcams are vulnerable to remote spying. The school piloted a program allowing each high school student to use an Apple Mac computer for both school and homework. However, the school had a way to turn on each computer remotely in the event it was lost or stolen.

It is difficult to buy an electronic device like a laptop, cell phone, or tablet without a factory installed web cam. There are programs that you can install on your own computer, which allows the owner to remotely access programs and files from another computer. In addition, there are malware or spyware programs that hackers can download through other software programs to activate a webcam remotely.

It is important to think about what you are comfortable with when it comes to allowing a web cam on your computer. Consider the consequences if someone activates your computer web cam remotely without your knowledge. This is especially important to consider it you or your children keep a computer or laptop in the bedroom where you dress or undress, or take a computer into the bathroom while you bath or shower.

I recommend taking steps now in to safeguard you or your children from exploitation later. A simple, quick way to ensure that no one can see you through your web cam is to place a small piece of black electrical tape over the web cam lens. Now if your system is hacked the person on the other end will see nothing. I also, mute my sound unless I am listening to music or a video. Cameras are everywhere now days but in our own home, we need to be proactive in protecting ourselves from the downfalls of having electronic media at our bedside.

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Content copyright © 2013 by Erika Lyn Smith. All rights reserved.
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