Marcus Thomas, former assistant director of the FBI’s Operational
Technology Division in Quantico, said in a recent story in
The Washington Post that the FBI has been able to covertly
activate a computer’s camera — without triggering the light that
lets users know it is recording — for several years.
Now research from Johns Hopkins University provides the first
public confirmation that it’s possible to do just that, and
demonstrates how. While the research focused on MacBook and iMac
models released before 2008, the authors say similar techniques
could work on more recent computers from a wide variety of
vendors. In other words, if a laptop has a built-in camera, it’s
possible someone — whether the federal government or a malicious
19 year old — could access it to spy on the user at any time.
I’m curious whether this remains true for recent Mac FaceTime cameras. Does the same technique still work?