Webcam spying. Is anyone spying on me?

There is an increasing awareness of how third parties spy on us since Wikileaks released documents detailing tools used by the CIA to infiltrate smartphones or computers. Governments, hackers, and corporations can relatively easily listen, track and watch us. They can also read our emails, see our files…

People are becoming increasingly aware of all these threats, and are starting to take action to protect themselves. And that’s what X Cloud wants to help you achieve. X Cloud is a completely private cloud storage service, where only you can truly access your files. Files are sharded and encrypted, and only you hold the decryption keys of these.

Recently, we also decided to tackle the issue with webcam spying, with our newly released product, X Cloud Vision. No other exploit is as vicious or expedient with its results as camera activation malware. An adversary is virtually guaranteed a successful blackmail or espionage campaign when hours of video footage are compiled. Almost every computer has a camera that can be used by malicious threat actors to surveil and spy on the user. The weaponization of a device’s camera is effortless and can be accomplished by the most inexperienced cyber-adversary using outdated malware.

It’s been reported that even Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and former FBI director James Comey cover their webcams. As cybersecurity company AVG reports, it is crucial that users cover their webcams in order to stop third parties from spying on them.

Kevin Haley, director of security response at Norton by Symantec, says users should maintain basic security practices to prevent someone from spying on their webcam, including keeping operating systems up to date, using strong security software, and being extra careful clicking on any links or attachments sent by email or through social networks. Then, of course, there’s the tape thing. As long as the camera is clearly blocked and no one can see through the tape, you’re good. Straightforward duct tape will work, but it might make your laptop sticky when you take it off. That’s why we created X Cloud Vision. It’s a beautifully designer sliding webcam cover which can easily uncover your webcam only when you really want to, without damaging your laptop in any way. You can get yours for €9.95, taxes & worldwide shipping costs included.

Bibliography

AVG. Spy game: the dangers of webcam hacking and how to avoid them (August 2017). Available at https://www.avg.com/en/signal/how-hackers-can-hijack-your-webcam-to-spy-on-you

Digital Spy. Can people really spy on me through my laptop or smartphone camera? (February 2019). Available at https://www.digitalspy.com/tech/a795242/can-people-spy-on-me-through-my-laptop-or-smartphone-camera/

Institute of Critical Infrastructure Technology. America Exposed — Who’s Watching You Through your Computer’s Camera? (May 2017). Available at https://icitech.org/icit-analysis-america-exposed-whos-watching-you-through-your-computers-camera/

USA TODAY. Yes, webcams can spy on you. This one simple thing can prevent it (March 2017). https://usatoday.com/story/tech/talkingtech/2017/03/10/webcam-security-cover-wikileaks-comey-zuckerberg/98953462/