Can Your Webcam Get Hacked? Steps You Can Take to Prevent This
People don’t often fear cyber attacks until they experience one and have to face the consequences. However, there is one similar fear that crossed everyone’s mind at least once. What if someone is watching you through your webcam right now? Unfortunately, this is not only a thought in our minds. Many people have experienced this kind of a cyber attack where hackers take control of their webcams and spy on them. If a certain device lacks a proper security system or a VPN for Windows, hackers can easily jump in and take over the camera.
Keep in mind that the webcam is not the only vulnerability. Hackers can also gain remote access to users’ microphones and record audio along with video. In other words, someone could be looking at you right now, and you wouldn’t know it. Naturally, people look for ways to protect themselves from intruders and cybercriminals. Even Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, covers up his webcam just to be sure no one is watching him. If some of the most important names in the IT industry are doing this, it is quite clear that all users should beware of these safety measures.
Use a VPN for Windows to Protect Your Webcam
Before we get into the actual list of steps to prevent hackers from accessing webcams remotely, let’s discuss the importance of VPNs. Think about it, is there a better way to protect a device than to make it invisible to hackers? Virtual private networks allow users to completely hide their devices and online activities from third parties. Once a VPN is activated, hackers cannot trace down the users’ information, IP address, or anything that would help them gain access to their system.
Thus, we recommend all users to opt for a reliable VPN for Windows to keep their data and devices hidden from hackers and third parties (You can find one of the most reliable options here: https://nordvpn.com/download/windows/). Besides online security, there are several other benefits to using a VPN, including the ability to bypass content geo-restrictions. In other words, investing in a high-quality VPN service does not only improve users’ online security but also brings along perks that can benefit them in the long run.
Steps to Prevent a Cyber Attack
#1 Cover it up
The most obvious step to prevent hackers from spying on the user is to cover the webcam with a piece of tape. While this won’t prevent cyber criminals from accessing the camera, it can prevent them from seeing the actual user in front of the computer. Users who have an external webcam should keep it unplugged while they’re not using it. Those who use laptops with built-in cameras don’t have the option to unplug the webcam, but they can always cover it up with a small piece of tape.
#2 Boost cybersecurity
Covering up a piece of hardware is not enough to keep hackers out of the system. Make sure to use proper anti-virus software to boost cybersecurity, strengthen your passwords, and use firewall tools to add another layer of protection. On top of these safety measures, users should make sure their system and software are regularly updated to avoid any possible vulnerabilities.
#3 Stay cautious
Stay cautious when using the internet. Avoid suspicious websites and don’t click on any links embedded in emails from unknown sources. Keep in mind that phishing scams and unauthorized downloads are often the cause of major cybersecurity issues that include webcam hacks.
#4 Secure the network
It is essential to ensure that the users’ network is properly secured. To secure your network, edit its settings and make sure to use a strong password and a username that is not easy to guess. Don’t forget to use a VPN for Windows daily, especially when connecting to public WiFi.
#5 Adjust webcam settings
Last but not least, users can edit and adjust webcam settings to get notifications each time the webcam is in use. Most webcams have the feature that sends notifications or lights up a small LED indicator to show that the camera is in use. Make sure to enable this feature, as it will notify you whenever the webcam starts recording.
No one wants to have that chilling feeling that someone is observing them through a webcam. However, this won’t stop cyber criminals from taking advantage of vulnerabilities in people’s devices and accessing their webcams.
Luckily, users can protect themselves by taking the right safety measures. These measures include boosting cybersecurity, using a VPN for Windows, and staying cautious regarding their online activities. When push comes to shove, they can always unplug their webcam or cover it up with a piece of tape to be 100% sure no one is watching them.