fbpx
Contact Us

Privacy Screens and Webcam Covers…Do We Really Need Them?

Go Back

Webcam Covers

A webcam covers is exactly as the name suggests...a small metal or plastic cover that covers your webcam. They're often applied to integrated webcams, e.g. those cameras facing the user on laptops, PCs and TVs to obscure the view when the webcam is sitting not in use. They can be lifted or slid across when you actually want to use the camera. Many good products can be found on online (especially Amazon) for around £5-10.

As discussed in this post here, they're needed because of sextortion attacks. This is where various sordid malware infections take control of our built-in webcams in order to record us when we are most vulnerable (e.g. getting changed or having sex). They then use this sensitive information against us to extort us. For example, if they record you masturbating, they will email you a snippet of what they’ve recorded and then threaten to publish it to your entire social media network.

Webcam covers fix this issue because even when a hacker has compromised your device and is able to secretly turn the webcam on and record from it, the webcam cover is in place physically blocking the view from the camera.

Now, the cover itself shouldn’t be fully relied upon – it’s a last line of defence. A good anti-virus program should be installed on all your devices to prevent infections in the first instance. Read this post on anti-virus products if you haven’t already got one in place! And that includes all your apple mac users who think you’re exempt (which unfortunately we're not because they are as equally vulnerable to viruses and malware as everything else!).

So, in conclusion you only need a webcam cover if you regularly leave a device that has a built-in webcam, out, with the webcam on show in places where you often undress or may be naked. Do you often use your laptop in the bedroom (where you undress) with the lid up? Tablets and mobile phones typically don’t need them because usually they are placed either directly up (facing the ceiling) or down (facing the floor/table) which negates the need to cover the camera itself.

Privacy Screens

A privacy screen polarises light so that when looking at your screen only you can see what’s being displayed and others (who are not directly in front of the screen) will not be able to see anything.

They can be slightly annoying to have on your laptop all the time so I wouldn’t advise them for absolutely everyone because the risk doesn’t necessitate that everyone needs them!

If you are often accessing sensitive information in public places such as on trains, hotel bars or planes, you may want to consider getting one. If you have this combination of both being in a public place and displaying sensitive information on your screen (often) then yes you should probably use one. If you only travel occasionally, or never process sensitive data in public then you really don’t need to use one.

Privacy screens are available for almost all products and devices and cost only £10-20 so are well worth the investment. They can be removable (get a magnetic one) so you could only use it when travelling.

Hopefully this clears the question up as to whether you need a privacy screen or webcam cover.

 

Jonny

Founder of www.SimpleCyberLife.com. Cyber security expert, public speaker and entrepreneur.

www.jonnypelter.com

jonny@simplecyberlife.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hacked Social Media Recovery Handbook!

Pop your email into the form below and we'll send you the link to your free handbook!

We hate spam and won't send you mindless marketing emails. We share some internet safety tips. You of course can unsubscribe at any time.

Free Protection Checklist!

Pop your email into the form below and we'll send you the link to your internet safety protection checklists!

We hate spam and won't send you mindless marketing emails. We share internet safety tips. You of course can unsubscribe at any time.

Free Cyber Bullying Handbook!

Pop your email into the form below and we'll send you the link to your free handbook!

We hate spam and won't send you mindless marketing emails. We share some internet safety tips occasionally. You of course can unsubscribe at any time.

Free I've Been Hacked Handbook!

Pop your email into the form below and we'll send you the link to your free handbook!

We hate spam and won't send you mindless marketing emails. We share internet safety tips. You of course can unsubscribe at any time.

Top