Webcams, cover or not?

If you're reading this article, look up. Chances are there is a little porthole on the top of your screen, yes, your actual screen. This little glassed over porthole is actually a web cam, and virtually every laptop and desktop comes equipped with one nowadays. if you have a smartphone, even your smartphone comes equipped with a camera, and because of this, virtually everyone on the planet with access to these technologies is now prone to being compromised. It sounds crazy, but it's actually true. Believe it or not, hackers are actually using people's webcams to blackmail and spy on them, and because of this, there are certain countermeasures you should be aware of to prevent such unfavorable circumstances from rearing their ugly heads. If you think it's paranoid or unncessary to take such measures, then you'd probably think that the FBI director is crazy, too.

That's because the current Director of the Federal Bureau of Intelligence, the United States' premier domestic intelligence agency, advises people to put tape over their computers as well. When asked why he did it, he simply said, "Because I saw someone smarter do it." With his sage knowledge in mind, you should most definitely consider putting tape over your computer's camera because this is a very important way to prevent any sort of data exposure.

The Process

For those of you that are unaware of the process that takes place when covering your webcam, it's actually quite simple. A lot of people like to put tape over their camera that is clear. While this sounds like a good idea in theory, in reality, the camera on your computer can still see through if the tape is too transparent. Aside from that, it's important to use tape that is not incredibly distracting or overly adhesive. When it comes to tape, there are all kinds of it. There are small, Scotch-brand tape that is used for envelopes and little arts and crafts projects. While this tape is more than capable of holding little materials together, it's not a good idea to do this when it comes to covering a webcam. Rather than using a clear brand weak tape, it's very important to use a powerful adhesive that is much more effective than covering the webcam with just a clear brand tape. If you are not sure that the tape you're using is effective or not, it's very important to use a self-facing camera program like Skype or something of similar capability.

This is important because these programs will allow you to test on yourself whether or not the cover-up job you accomplished was actually effective or not. Assuming it wasn't effective, you can always re-tape the camera.

How it Happens

Aside from taping up your camera, you'll have to worry about how people hack your camera in the first place. There are certain programs that can hijack your hardware, and assuming a camera-hacking program accomplishes its goal, then you're going to be in serious trouble as far as your camera's security is concerned. And if the worst does happen, be sure to cover up your camera with tape.

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