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Thought your webcam was secure? Think again!

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posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 07:58 AM
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reply to post by rickymouse
 



Yep. I think along these lines. I think they have it in the screens... of the computers and the
new style TV's. Technology is far more advanced than any one can imagine.

I remember having a phone conversation many years ago during Christmas with my grandma
(this was in the 80's...) and the conversation went something like this... She said ya know...one
day they are going to have phones where we can view each other while we talk...the phones will have screens. I giggled at this notion back then. But today it is in fact a reality.

Has anyone taken apart the computer screens or TV screen yet to see ?
I'm not too techy saavy to do this myself and I don't want to ruin my computer...
Anyone tested it out ?


leolady




posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 09:03 AM
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Shuye
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I wonder if disabling the drivers in device manager of both the webcam and mic when not needed, will prevent hackers or the government to nonetheless use it?

Any suggestions on this?


Well, this is an amateur opinion as I'm JUST getting into learning Visual Studio (what writes Windows programs and apps). I'll say this though. The first thing I did was spend a whole night just reading through the statements, declarations and functions it uses. As in..all of them.. lol.. I'm like that for how I go about learning a new thing like this.

Anyway... What I found was more than enough low level methods so *I* could reactivate anything you disabled, if I knew or assumed your system had it to enable. That's just me..just starting to learn. I have no question, given what I'm understanding of modern coding? They'd have little problem fully re-INSTALLING it in a silent mode you may not even be aware is happening if you aren't eagle-eye watchful about system and hard drive activity (I usually am for other reasons). Simple silent re-activation wouldn't strike me as a problem.



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 09:08 AM
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MystikMushroom
Why would they want to watch someone staring at a screen typing? And what "smart" criminal would do illegal acts or discuss illegal acts in front of a computer with a webcam?

It seems a bit paranoid to me.


I can think of many uses for this. I just don't trust their restraint or legal controls anymore. In a legitimate way? Well, lets try not to imagine TOO much, what they'd have to watch through...but evidence in things like a kiddie porn case would make itself, if they have screen capture ability to go with the movie of the suspects reaction to the screen contents, as the cam records it. (ewwww.... Talk about a nasty nasty job some poor agent would be stuck with).

Another application would be before a raid. Lets dump dope out of it, since we all have different feelings about such raids even happening..but call it a bank robbery ring. Criminals never seem to be the sharpest tools in the junk drawer, so it wouldn't surprise me if such a group wouldn't even think to kill cam/mic on a lap top or other system. That use could literally save lives...their own included, for making a raid no shooting has to happen on.

It's just how likely I think it's become that they abuse the living crap out of this and use the tech as a fishing tool.

edit on 8-12-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 12:05 PM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


As a coding beginner as well (web developing) it makes a lot of sense what you have just said, I guess it very much depends if the hackers (or bad boys in government) are writing such "if" codes to enabled them in case the camera & mic are disabled.

I would guess such codes exist, unless you write a code that disables it or make sure it is disabled every 5 seconds. This would perhaps overrun their code.
At least for a little while.

I believe it is possible to write a code that prevents access to it, or at least making it much safer, instead of using duct tapes. We just need to know our way around it. I think this would be quite a useful app for sometimes paranoid ATS'ers like us haha.

edit on 8-12-2013 by Shuye because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 01:02 PM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Yeah, there are PLENTY of ways around things like that. One would just be to store the recorded data until the computer is linked to a network again (the easiest approach).

All of this is easily tied into things like PRISM. There are also legitimate backdoors in almost every OS. These can be used as pipelines to transfer data. Though, in a system like we currently have, this part would ONLY be necessary to access hardware that is currently turned "off." When that piece of hardware (webcam, say) is online and sending data, there is no reason to do anything since that data is run through nice, centralized networks.

When recording, it wont actually be a person looking at you through the camera (though that is possible). The recorded data is run through digital filters and algorithms to single out anything "of interest," where it would then likely be set aside for further filtering or direct observation.

The efficiency of such a system would be directly linked to how large the pool of sources is. When you start factoring in "typical" technology in a common first world home, it becomes fairly easy to cover all of the bases. Webcams, integrated mics/cams in monitors, in TV sets, gaming consoles, cell phones, etc. etc.

Basically, if it is connected to the internet in any way (or ANY large communication network), and has a method to record environmental data, that data is probably already being collected and analyzed in large data centers (bigger ones are being built). Certain keywords, behaviors, faces, etc will red flag specific data sources for more investigation. Centralized communication networks dont even need to physically "tap" communications at this point, since you only need to run some filters on the throughput of data that is constantly streaming in.

Its really not that hard, it only requires access to large pools of data (check), math that detects patterns (check), and the willingness of an entity wielding such power to use it to further its agenda (use your personal discernment on that one
)
edit on 8-12-2013 by Serdgiam because: added some info



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 05:21 PM
link   

leolady
reply to post by rickymouse
 



Yep. I think along these lines. I think they have it in the screens... of the computers and the
new style TV's. Technology is far more advanced than any one can imagine.

I remember having a phone conversation many years ago during Christmas with my grandma
(this was in the 80's...) and the conversation went something like this... She said ya know...one
day they are going to have phones where we can view each other while we talk...the phones will have screens. I giggled at this notion back then. But today it is in fact a reality.

Has anyone taken apart the computer screens or TV screen yet to see ?
I'm not too techy saavy to do this myself and I don't want to ruin my computer...
Anyone tested it out ?


leolady


Yes I am a tv repair tech and no camera's



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 06:26 PM
link   

Wrabbit2000

Shuye
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I wonder if disabling the drivers in device manager of both the webcam and mic when not needed, will prevent hackers or the government to nonetheless use it?

Any suggestions on this?


Well, this is an amateur opinion as I'm JUST getting into learning Visual Studio (what writes Windows programs and apps). I'll say this though. The first thing I did was spend a whole night just reading through the statements, declarations and functions it uses. As in..all of them.. lol.. I'm like that for how I go about learning a new thing like this.

Anyway... What I found was more than enough low level methods so *I* could reactivate anything you disabled, if I knew or assumed your system had it to enable. That's just me..just starting to learn. I have no question, given what I'm understanding of modern coding? They'd have little problem fully re-INSTALLING it in a silent mode you may not even be aware is happening if you aren't eagle-eye watchful about system and hard drive activity (I usually am for other reasons). Simple silent re-activation wouldn't strike me as a problem.


This applies to more than just Windows. Remember the thing a couple months back about TOR being compromised because of them flipping on everyones Javascript and running some code?

Recently I've been reading up on ways to be secure in the darkweb and one of them that has been brought up is to make a cd/dvd of an operating system with whatever software you wish to use, then finalize the disk. This way nothing can be written to it. As long as no one gets physical access to the disk, when you boot from that disk you're on as secure a machine as you can possibly have these days.



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 07:40 PM
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reply to post by Aazadan
 


You can run an OS in a sandbox, too. It's what I do when I'm doing something that might be a problem. I have a Windows 7 Ultimate machine that can do a copy of Windows XP in a virtual machine. I have it set not to retain changes on exit. So I go to shady websites, run possibly contaminated software and whatnot, and let it corrupt the XP. It gives you a way to check what it did, and how, and when you're done, you just re-initialize the virtual machine and all the viruses go away.



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 09:33 PM
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Aazadan

This applies to more than just Windows. Remember the thing a couple months back about TOR being compromised because of them flipping on everyones Javascript and running some code?

Recently I've been reading up on ways to be secure in the darkweb and one of them that has been brought up is to make a cd/dvd of an operating system with whatever software you wish to use, then finalize the disk. This way nothing can be written to it. As long as no one gets physical access to the disk, when you boot from that disk you're on as secure a machine as you can possibly have these days.


The latest version of the Tor browser bundle has scripts disabled, and if someone thinks they might be getting a trojan/virus, they can use any of the plethora of Linux versions on a flash drive, so even if a virus gets access, it would be hard to jump onto one of the local hard discs.



posted on Dec, 8 2013 @ 11:22 PM
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RidgeWalker

Aazadan

This applies to more than just Windows. Remember the thing a couple months back about TOR being compromised because of them flipping on everyones Javascript and running some code?

Recently I've been reading up on ways to be secure in the darkweb and one of them that has been brought up is to make a cd/dvd of an operating system with whatever software you wish to use, then finalize the disk. This way nothing can be written to it. As long as no one gets physical access to the disk, when you boot from that disk you're on as secure a machine as you can possibly have these days.


The latest version of the Tor browser bundle has scripts disabled, and if someone thinks they might be getting a trojan/virus, they can use any of the plethora of Linux versions on a flash drive, so even if a virus gets access, it would be hard to jump onto one of the local hard discs.


It could alter data on the flash drive though, hence the reason for a finalized disk, nothing can write that way. Of course you can't save anything either but that may or may not be an issue.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 01:04 AM
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reply to post by MystikMushroom
 



MystikMushroom
Why would they want to watch someone staring at a screen typing? And what "smart" criminal would do illegal acts or discuss illegal acts in front of a computer with a webcam?

It seems a bit paranoid to me.

There is actually a tiny creepy subculture built around this called RAT (Remote Access Trojan) slaving.

The reasons for doing it range from control, power, cheap thrills or laughs at the victim's expense, and full blown blackmail. There are a handful of worrying forums which facilitate RAT slave trading etc ... where persons trade cam and computer access they have hacked. I believe it's under reported due to victim embarrassment and shame.

It's one of the most difficult issues with technology convergence today, nearly every device comes with a mandatory camera from consoles to mobile phones. It's true that the chances of it happening to you in particular are quite slim, but the fact very few people take precautions makes it all the more tempting for people with low morals and not much else to do with their time.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 03:38 AM
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reply to post by Aazadan
 





Recently I've been reading up on ways to be secure in the darkweb and one of them that has been brought up is to make a cd/dvd of an operating system with whatever software you wish to use, then finalize the disk. This way nothing can be written to it. As long as no one gets physical access to the disk, when you boot from that disk you're on as secure a machine as you can possibly have these days.


You left out the important part: never put that computer online.

Probably other than linux, I don't think you can build a computer and never go online. Microsoft needs to sniff the machine and check to see if you are legit. I don't know about the Mac (never owned one, never will).

Even with linux, I've never seen a fresh OS that didn't fetch updates from the repo. All software is full of bugs, so patches are inevitable. I suppose you could use that Opensuse build service and create a fully patched linux system.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:20 AM
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Aazadan

It could alter data on the flash drive though, hence the reason for a finalized disk, nothing can write that way. Of course you can't save anything either but that may or may not be an issue.


I know some flash drives have a lock switch on them, but how that works in terms of hard locking it, I don't know. The flash drive I have with linux, in fact the one I used to do some upgrades on this linux system, doesn't have that feature.

If security is a major concern, the route you suggest, that of using a finalized optical disc, would be the best. If the person needed to, as newer systems become available, he could boot off of that disc, download an image of a newer system and mount it on another disc/flash drive, and then swap to using it.

Although unless you're engaged in activities that would make you a target, the electrical tape seems like a less stressful way of mitigating this particular risk.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 04:28 PM
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RidgeWalker

Aazadan

It could alter data on the flash drive though, hence the reason for a finalized disk, nothing can write that way. Of course you can't save anything either but that may or may not be an issue.


I know some flash drives have a lock switch on them, but how that works in terms of hard locking it, I don't know. The flash drive I have with linux, in fact the one I used to do some upgrades on this linux system, doesn't have that feature.

If security is a major concern, the route you suggest, that of using a finalized optical disc, would be the best. If the person needed to, as newer systems become available, he could boot off of that disc, download an image of a newer system and mount it on another disc/flash drive, and then swap to using it.

Although unless you're engaged in activities that would make you a target, the electrical tape seems like a less stressful way of mitigating this particular risk.


It all depends, right now I agree that just tape is sufficient we're in an era now however where we can't guarantee our government won't become the next North Korea. It's good to publish the workarounds now incase that happens because one day we may not be able to.


gariac
You left out the important part: never put that computer online.

Probably other than linux, I don't think you can build a computer and never go online. Microsoft needs to sniff the machine and check to see if you are legit. I don't know about the Mac (never owned one, never will).

Even with linux, I've never seen a fresh OS that didn't fetch updates from the repo. All software is full of bugs, so patches are inevitable. I suppose you could use that Opensuse build service and create a fully patched linux system.


The point of the method is to go online. Obviously you open yourself up to some things by doing so such as vulnerabilities on the server, or just unpatched security exploits in the image of the machine you're using but it's as secure as you can possibly have online. Especially if you then use a fairly secure OS with a browser that has __javascript disabled.
edit on 9-12-2013 by Aazadan because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 04:31 PM
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reply to post by Pinke
 



Dear Pinke. I tried to tell em about RATs but they dont listen to me cause I wear a goat mask.. in the nude.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 07:14 PM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


They would get bored watching me.



If one is really paranoid, you could always cover up the camera


Problem Solved!!!



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 08:43 PM
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reply to post by Aazadan
 


If you go online, the OS on write once media will not protect you. There are ways to hide a virus in the bios, and certainly a virus can stay resident in the in RAM.

Linux requires a swap file and shared memory. I'm not sure it can be run without them, though certainly they can be in RAM.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:11 PM
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This thread is so incredibly reassuring; here all this time I thought I was the only moonbat who put post-its over the built-in webcam. You all really make me feel normal, if such a thing is possible.

I love this Lenovo towerless computer. My Bride giggled at me when I pointed out how the webcam icon flashed occasionally -- seemingly having nothing to do with what I was doing on the computer. She cut out the lil' pieces of post-its for me though. I do no nefarious activities on the internet, and have almost no natural modesty, but still, some freako getting their jollies watching me type?? Too creepy for words.

Begone, foul creature! No view for you!



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:22 PM
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gariac
reply to post by Aazadan
 


If you go online, the OS on write once media will not protect you. There are ways to hide a virus in the bios, and certainly a virus can stay resident in the in RAM.

Linux requires a swap file and shared memory. I'm not sure it can be run without them, though certainly they can be in RAM.


BIOS viruses exist but they need to be written for that specific BIOS. Meaning whoevers going after you needs to know what BIOS you're running and have an exploit ready for it. This is great for a mass produced item like an IPhone where everything is the same model but it's not so good for the mix and match world of modern day computer hardware.

Again, I'm not arguing this will give you 100% protection, 100% computer security doesn't exist but it will make them expend a lot of resources to figure out what you're doing... more resources than it's worth considering they can get you in other ways.



posted on Feb, 27 2014 @ 11:19 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 

Yours and some others' suspicions...
www.abovetopsecret.com...
www.abovetopsecret.com...
www.abovetopsecret.com...
...have been confirmed:
GCHQ intercepted webcam images of millions of Yahoo users worldwide
I can't seem to start a new topic, but it seems this is also happening per Britain's GCHQ (with NSA help, of course).

Fun times ahead.



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