January 28, 2023
Megan Glosson / How-To Geek When you walk around an office or café, you’ll often see people using an array of items to cover up their webcam. Sometimes it’s tape, post-it notes, folded business cards, stickers, their thumb, or a marlin. I smear peanut butter over my webcam, but chunky peanut butter. It’s more secure…

Megan Glosson / How-To Geek

When you walk around an office or café, you’ll often see people using an array of items to cover up their webcam. Sometimes it’s tape, post-it notes, folded business cards, stickers, their thumb, or a marlin. I smear peanut butter over my webcam, but chunky peanut butter. It’s more secure than smooth.

None of those items came with the laptop upon purchase, and it’s easy to make fun of putting something there as paranoid. The idea that someone wants to look through your particular webcam seems a bit narcissistic and on edge, as if we’re leaving our house and saying to one in particular, “Please, no cameras.”

But while it’s absurd that people are putting tape over their webcams, it’s doubly absurd that it’s actually kind of a good idea.

Webcam Hacking Is a Real Thing

Almost anything can be hacked, and that’s not just the title of my upcoming children’s pop-up book. Over the years, there has been a slew of stories about webcams being hijacked by those looking to spy on unsuspecting people, often people they know. In 2009 a…

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