“What ought to be the standard of disclosure for captured data once we have all (or most) decided to introduce a permanent wiretap into our home?” said Yochai Benkler, a Harvard professor who studies technology and the law. “We are moving into a universe where we need to … revise Fourth Amendment doctrine to set high barriers for access to data captured by a ubiquitous surveillance device like the Echo.”
One of the most insidious actions of malware, is abusing the audio and video capabilities of an infected host to record an unknowing user. Macs, of course, are not immune; malware such as OSX/Eleanor, OSX/Crisis, OSX/Mokes, and others, all attempt to spy on OS X users. OverSight constantly monitors a system, alerting a user whenever the internal microphone is activated, or the built-in webcam is accessed. And yes, while the webcam’s LED will turn on whenever a session is initially started, new research has shown that malware can surreptitious piggyback into such existing sessions (FaceTime, Sykpe, Google Hangouts, etc.) and record both audio and video – without fear of detection
So, concerned Mr. School Administrator, so responsible and serious in his duties, remotely activates his secret backdoor into student bedrooms at home to watch and listen to all the goings on?? This is one of the most horrifying abuses of authority showing abominable disregard for privacy, not to mention paedophilia, that I’ve ever imagined! (if true: keep in mind this is just an allegation – nothing proven yea or nay).
According to the filings in Blake J Robbins v Lower Merion School District (PA) et al, the laptops issued to high-school students in the well-heeled Philly suburb have webcams that can be covertly activated by the schools’ administrators, who have used this facility to spy on students and even their families. The issue came to light when the Robbins’s child was disciplined for “improper behavior in his home” and the Vice Principal used a photo taken by the webcam as evidence. The suit is a class action, brought on behalf of all students issued with these machines.
On the district website, LMSD, Superintendent McGinley states that he is “… proud of the fact that we are a leader …” while somehow comparing this situation to their installation of security cameras around the on-campus vending machines. Just Fascinating.
Hopefully this whole matter is just some misunderstanding or I’ll have to lose all hope for the “land of the free.”