“Camfecting” is a form of Cybercrime in which a hacker attacks your PC’s webcam and gains remote control access to it.
Camfecting has skyrocketed in the last few years or so. The fact that it centers around invading your privacy and using it for blackmailing you into handing over a specific amount of money makes it all the more important to steer clear of it.
There are many signs that you can look into to know whether or not your webcam is hacked. However, you should try your best to make sure it doesn’t come to that. Just for that reason, below, you’ll find assorted ways to help protect your webcam from getting hacked.
Protect Your Webcam From Hacking – Things that You Need to Do!
First things first, you need to test your webcam and make sure whether it is functional or not.
Having done that, you can move on to the following steps:
Cover Up Your Webcam
One of the simplest ways of preventing your webcam from being hacked is by covering your webcam with a webcam cover, paper, or black tape.
It is essentially an indirect method of protecting your webcam since in this case, the hacker might still have remote control access to your webcam. However, he’ll be unable to retrieve any of your private data since the webcam won’t show him anything, rendering any recording useless.
In the past, celebrities like Mark Zuckerberg and ex-FBI Director James Comey have been known to use this trick to protect their PCs from any sort of webcam scam.
Update Your Video Streaming Apps
If you’re in the possession of any kind of video streaming or video conferencing applications, then you need to make sure that you keep them up to date.
These apps often have some troubling features, for instance, the video conferencing app Zoom was found to have a weakness in a feature last year that allowed people to join meetings instantly.
Consequently, many hackers were exploiting this weakness to hack into the webcams of different people’s PCs. An update was later launched to resolve this issue. Some Zoom users had to manually download and install this update to finally get rid of this nightmare.
(Note: If you require any such webcam streaming app, always download them from the official site of the app.)
Use a Strong Antivirus Software
The process of hacking into your webcam requires a hacker to install some sort of a virus in your PC. This serves as a pathway to your webcam. So, it’s important to have very strong antivirus software installed on your PC.
Many reputable antivirus software have a webcam security feature as well. They will prevent malware from infecting your webcam and alert you if they detect any suspicious activity.
Update Your Operating System
It doesn’t matter if you are a Windows, Android, or an IOS user, you need to make sure that your Operating System is up-to-date.
This is especially significant because many features of an operating system get outdated as time goes on and to replace these features, the producers of these operating systems launch updates.
If these updates are not downloaded and installed immediately, there’s a good chance that hackers will use the loopholes in the outdated version of your operating system to hack into your device and take over your webcam.
In short, instead of ignoring the seemingly annoying popup messages of windows/software update, if you do follow up with them for once, you can save yourself a whole lot of trouble down the road.
Spam emails are common nowadays, often proclaiming that you can make thousands of dollars with a simple trick.
Such links are usually a scam. When you click on these links, malware may be installed on your PC. This would give the hackers a pathway to access your data.
The hackers can then control your webcam to collect private information. Reporting such messages is best as you are less likely to receive them in the future as a result.
Use a VPN
One of the best methods that you can apply to protect your webcam from being hacked involves using a trusted and high-quality VPN.
A VPN does this by encrypting all your data online which means that it blocks the pathway of a hacker into your PC. If there’s no connection between the hacker’s PC and that of yours, then you can be assured that your webcam is secure.
Use a High-Quality Webcam Software
Last but not least, you should ensure that you have the best available webcam software at your disposal.
Even though the small-sized webcam software that your Operating System comes with seems to get the job done, but when it comes to the security features, your best bet is to replace it with a more advanced software.
Not only will it better protect your PC from intrusions, but you’ll also get better quality videos and pictures.