- The Facts:Hackers have successfully been able to access the front facing cameras on Google and Samsung phones without permission from the user and regardless of whether or not the phone was unlocked. They were able to take pictures and record video.
- Reflect On:Why should you care? This is an outright invasion of our right to privacy. If we continue to willingly give up all our rights, soon we won’t have any left.
As handy as they are, our smartphones are literally portable tracking devices. Equipped with GPS technology, people can easily be located and for most android users a record of where they’ve been each day since they’ve had their fancy phones is stored online. If that’s not creepy enough, the microphones on our phones are also able to record our conversations because they are listening even when we don’t think they are. Finally, you know those handy front-facing cameras often used to capture the perfect selfie? Recently, researchers have revealed how this camera can be used to spy on users, who would have thought?
The security research team from Checkmarx has uncovered a major vulnerability that is affecting Google and Samsung smartphones and has a potential to impact the hundreds of millions of android users across the globe. Apparently it’s now fixed, but the researchers discovered a way for a hack attacker to take control of the front facing camera and remotely take photos, record video, listen in on your conversations and more. All happening silently in the background without your awareness.
And, although it’s important to note that the following is merely speculation, if hackers have the ability to do this, then you better believe that the NSA and other high level government agencies are able to do the same thing. This isn’t something new, Edward Snowden, NSA whistleblower, and many others like him have talked about and have explained how our phones are actually used to spy on us.