What Security Issues Can A Web Cam Present?

The information highway has expanded past our desktop computers that used to sit in the corner of the living room to new places around the house.

With the power of the laptops that are out there, you are able to turn any room into a computer study.

With devices like the IPad being able to connect to the internet, you are able to turn your kitchen into a place where you can create miracle recipes by looking at them on the web.

Also, with the power of mobile phones being connected to 3G networks, you are able to record a video blog while you walk down the street.

All of this is thanks to the internet that has been placed in our lives.

But there is also a dark side to the information superhighway.


With all of the ways we have to place our personal information on the internet, there is going to be a time where we place too much information on there.

One of the devices that we use every day that can lead to our downfall on the internet is the web cam.

In this article, I will talk about how the web cam that is attached to you or your child’s computer can become dangerous.

Where Is The Web Cam In Your House?

There are several reasons why I am asking this question.

The first reason is because of the fact that you can leave your web cam on and find yourself in an embarrassing position online.

We will sometimes use the web cam to be able to talk to our friends and family.

We can sometime forget to turn it off.

This means that video feed that you were broadcasting can still be going out on the internet.

The person that was on the other end of the original broadcast can see you undressed or in any other unflattering poses.

When you are finished talking to someone on the web cam, make sure the device is off.

Most web cams will have a light that you can see when the device is on.

When you are done with the broadcast, make sure that the light is turned off.

Another security risk is your children in the house.

There is an epidemic going around of teenagers putting racy videos of themselves online.

While at the time it might seem fun, in reality they are sending the video to their friends and those friends are sending the file to other friends.

The next thing that you know, you have a small viral video making the rounds.

So if you give your child a computer as a gift and they are still young, make sure that you check out what they are doing on the camera all of the time.

Even if they cannot see it now, you will be helping them avoid a mistake that can carry on for the rest of their lives.

Hackers Can Get Into Your Web Cam

While the topics that I discussed in previous paragraphs are all bad, they are also preventable as well.

If you are careful enough and watch your kids while they are on the internet then you might be able to prevent this from happening.

But when you are dealing with black hat hackers, that is another matter altogether.

There have been instances of where black hat hackers have been able to find a way to be able to get inside of your web cam so that they can see what it sees.

If you download the wrong software, you can easily become a victim of this type of attack as well.

This is why you must make sure that whenever you are ready to download a file off of the internet that you are ready to scan it as well.

If you do not scan the file and then you are attacked, you are as much to blame as the black hat hacker.

The only way that a black hat hacker would be able to take over your web cam is by tricking you into installing the malware yourself.

If you have scanned the software, there is a good chance that your antivirus program would be able to pick this up.

If you are infected by a piece of malware that affects your camera there is a way that you can tell – if you turn off your computer and the web cam starts up itself, then there is a good chance that you might be infected.

There are very few software packages that are out the market that will start up your camera along with the operating system.

If your camera is doing this then there is a good chance that someone has gotten to it.

Your web cam can become an attack point for the ambitious black hat hacker out there.

Make sure that you follow a few rules of protocol to make sure that you do not become a victim.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.


  1. […] course this is something that we have always heard about but the new twist is that they are able to take over our web cams.How are they able to do it?There are several ways in which the bad guys are able to get inside of […]

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Chad Choron and webprotect, Gutenbyte. Gutenbyte said: What Security Issues Can A Web Cam Present?: If you are infected by a piece of malware that affects your c… http://tinyurl.com/4m2afro […]

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