Why You Should Put a Post-It Over Your Laptop Camera

from Note to Self

How much would it take for someone to hack your life? And really, how worried do you actually need to be?

For most of us, this question stays in the realm of the hypothetical. For others, it only turns into a question after the worst has happened. For tech journalist Kevin Roose, co-host of Fusion’s new documentary series Real Future, it was a chance to be the human embodiment of a Fortune 500 company. On this week’s Note to Self, hear what happened when Roose asked some of the best hackers in the world to put him through a “penetration test,” or a “pen test.” 

As he explains it:

“Basically Coca Cola will bring in a hacker and say ‘I want you to spend a month trying as hard as you can  to get into our systems, exploit vulnerabilities, take advantage of weaknesses and report back to us what you found so we could fix it.’ And I thought, ‘What if I could do the personal version of that?'”

Using tactics from fake programs to remote desktop takeovers, to a simple YouTube video of some crying babies… Roose figured out exactly how much damage it’s possible to do.

Spoiler: This episode will make you want to put a PIN on your phone provider account. It’ll possibly make you want to download a security program like Little Snitch. At very least, it will probably make you want to cover up the camera on your computer.

More here.

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50 Responses to Why You Should Put a Post-It Over Your Laptop Camera

  1. Spencer Ross April 15, 2016 at 1:47 pm #

    The digital age has been a blessing a curse. For people like myself who couldn’t design anything or hack into another person’s computer, and who barely know that you just should click on unrecognizable material then it may be a curse. However the innovative side of technology is obvious and computerized systems and advancements are the future and will be for the years to come. I do not dismiss these technological advances, but this podcast has set the stage for a rational conversation about the pros and cons of our technological age.

    This podcast is mainly about making sure people do not feel so secure with their technological security. I am not technologically inclined but I am fairly cautious when it comes to technology because I understand how easily a person can get onto someone else’s computer to do some real damage to their life. Computer systems like webcams and other tools that will let a hacker into the most private moments of your life must be expected to be corrupted in the sense that they can be used against you. You should always assume that if you are not positive that your own specific security measures will deny anyone else access then, then you must assume that whatever it is you are trying to secure can be compromised. For example I have no security measures that guard against a hacker using my webcam to spy on me, so just now I to put a sticky note over my webcam.

    It seems like a trivial and petty defense against people from hacking, and maybe even the easy way out of really learning how to secure yourself from technological harm and hacking from other people. But it is without a doubt effective in keeping people from using your own camera on your device or laptop against you. I need to become much more advanced in my own use of cyber security. I cannot always rely on the simile from the podcast that says that a hacker would not want to waste their time with stealing my information, because while it is true, they wouldn’t waste that time to take what I have, they would only not do it because it is not of much value to them. However the value of my info to them is worth one tenth of the value that the security of my information has to me. Accordingly, I should treat such information with this inherent value. That if I value my different computerized accounts at cell phone companies, credit card companies, and at banks and other financial institutions, then I must protect myself against a hack. And the first vital step to doing so is recruiting the help of a friend of a trusted service that will teach you all you need to know about cyber security for your own personal information.

  2. Billy Vorrius April 15, 2016 at 2:56 pm #

    Hacking has infiltrated our security since the digital age has taken over. Kevin in this audio file really showed me how unsafe our computers are. He used the example of Coca Cola and how they use a penetration test, where the companies will hire hackers to test their security. Kevin hired his own hackers, and they found his address on his dog’s tag. His cell phone company let a woman change is password and username over the phone, since their was immense noise from fake crying babies. This worries me, that companies sometimes seem to give too much convenience for the customer, in which was a woman that wasn’t even Kevin and claimed to be his wife. This happens all of the time. I noticed that many women give this reason when using a man’s credit card. Most of the time they are telling the truth, but at my store we have to ask when we sell giftcards. I happen to catch a credit thief at my job, where she was then later interrogated by police. How did she get a man’s credit card? Well in this digital era, it happens a lot. She probably somehow was able to get a credit card mailed to her in his name.
    The worst part about this is that hackers will exist as long as digital technology exists. The woman leading this podcast used a simile of how having safe programs that enhance the firewall on your computer are like taking a self defense class. I do like this comparison, however, the problem is that most people will not download extra software on their computer, just like how most people will not take a self defense class. If we really want to reduce the amount of hacking performed, we have to make sure our software comes with more complex firewall. For example, maybe installing Little Snitch (security software) is a bit of a hassle for the average computer user. Maybe if Microsoft had made a deal with Little Snitch to let them incorporate their security in the next Windows OS, a lot of hacking may be reduced.
    The most naive thing that Kevin had said in this podcast is that his account was private on instagram so nobody can see his photos. This is false, for which all hackers need to do is view the URL and paste it into their browser to view the photo on your “private account”. The article also mentioned “crazy Ex’s” will most likely want to hire a hacker or hack your computer themselves. If they are still friends with you on Instagram, than they can view your photos, copy and paste them in a word document using the “print screen command”, and then send those files to a hacker to be analyzed. This happens all of the time and it is a serious danger to our security. At the end of the day, the best thing we can do is reduce the amount of hacking, for which there will always be hacking even if there is advanced encryption on your computer or smart device.

  3. Cailee Valente April 15, 2016 at 3:10 pm #

    Last night I was coming home from some art gallery openings in New York City with my friend from home and on the train we got into some interesting conversations. She had just recently bought the iphone 6 plus which has some new features that the regular iphone 6, my phone, has. One of these features is a “live photo” where it shows a second or two of movement before and after the picture was taken. This means that the phone has to have been filming before you even decided that you wanted to take a picture. What is concerning about this is that people do not think into this at all, they just think “wow this feature is so cool, technology is crazy!” This made us realize that not only is the government, or apple or whoever, is probably spying on us through the iphone 6 plus every second without our realization, but they are probably using our fingerprints for the same reason. This is what I thought of when I saw this article title. I also have seen many people with sticky notes covering their laptop, but I thought they were just being paranoid. I did not think too much into it until I saw my friend’s iphone and opened my mind to the potential reality.
    Apple releases all of these new features on their phones, but the issue is that people are oblivious as to what the real motives of the features are. People think that apple is making their lives easier, but is that the reality? Of course people can have theories, but Apple or the government are not going to come out and say “yes we added all of this technology to spy on you.” I do not know how to figure out if this is really what happens, but in the meantime I have enough reasons to assume. When apple added the fingerprint unlock option on the iphone they easily could be tricking people into giving them their fingerprints. Now Apple has access to millions of people’s fingerprints. This may make someone feel like Apple is against the people, rather than for the people. Then situations with apple arise that the media portrays in a way that makes people think that Apple is for the people. The one situation where the government asked apple to allow them to gain access to unlock a dead terrorists’s iphone and apple said they could not do this without unlocking access to everyone’s iphone. When I first heard this, people I was with were arguing about government polices and other things I did not understand. My first thought was about how this seemed completely unrealistic. Technology is so advanced and capable of crazy things that it seems unreal that apple is unable to unlock one single iphone. Now I know I do not know all of the information in this case, but if my beliefs are accurate than this seems unrealistic to me. Regardless, this event made everyone think that Apple would never betray its beloved customers therefore Apple cares about the people. However, on the train last night I thought about what if this was all an act to cover up any hidden agendas Apple may have that way Apple appears for the people even though they aren’t in reality. People could have been becoming too curious about being spyed on and the fingerprint scenario so Apple could have wanted to falsely reassure everyone that they would never betray their customers. Now I may be completely overthinking this, but it is always good to be curious.

  4. Stephanie Nwaiwu April 15, 2016 at 3:25 pm #

    I got my first laptop in 6th grade. I had never been more excited in my life to have a way to communicate with my friends. Mainly because first, I didn’t have a phone, secondly, our family computer had crashed at least 50 times before and was basically incapable of use. Almost two months after first receiving my laptop, I downloaded OOVOO. A video messaging platform that would allow for me to use my laptop’s built in camera to communicate with my friends. That was my first encounter with being able to use my cameras laptop for any use. Thanks to that first encounter, I began using my camera for everything. Taking pictures of me, myself, my friends, filming random (horrible) videos; etc. But what I really failed to realize is that, in technicality, my camera is always on. One night, as my family settled around the TV like we did every Friday, we watched a Dateline special about how people’s laptop and even phone camera’s could be hacked and accessed, without the knowledge of the laptop owner, to spy on whoever’s laptop it may be. They did many showings of it, how people who keep their laptops open and their camera’s could be seen while people are changing, doing things with other people, or just downright spying on whatever the want. This article sparked your interests with its title about camera’s but it really is just a cursor to helping people understand how entire laptops can be hacked. Beginning with the camera, people can hack into your documents, your back-ups, cloud data, photos, emails, and on and on and on. No computer really is safe from anything like that.

  5. Meghna Shah April 15, 2016 at 3:51 pm #

    Being aware of all the horrifying issues going on in the world is essential. Tons of people do not even know a lot of the things that go on, to protect themselves. Watching this episode and reading the article attached to it, really left a mark on my life and explained the simple thing we need to do to protect ourselves.

    Every new laptop or computer has a webcam built in. some may use theirs often and that is great if they do, but if the webcam is not in use it is essential to cover it with something. Many use a post it, I personally didn’t like the look of a post it, so I bought a little plastic piece that is made especially to cover your camera. The video talks about all the dangers of someone not covering their web cam. These dangers include a person being able to watch you through your webcam. It is something that happens very often and is very common. People can watch you all day as long as your screen is open, they can see you in your room, changing, getting ready and you would not even know. That is why it is essential for everyone to be proactive about this issue and cover your webcam. The last thing anyone would want is to be hacked by a complete stranger because it is completely unsafe.

  6. Matthew Ehrhardt April 15, 2016 at 4:31 pm #

    Well the first messed up ting that caught my attention in this article is the fact that this news caster let two different people hack him and his personal computer. They did mention in the clip about how huge corporations bring in hackers to test the strength of their systems, but this stunt he tried here was quite foolish. Unless the hackers that he hired signed some sort of agreement before he and them do this, then this guy is a complete idiot. The information they were able to obtain could potential destroy his entire life, and he thought it would be a cool 10 minute bit on his show so for that he is a fool. However, the intent of his experiment did have good cause. The average person is unaware of just how powerful these hackers are. Of course this was much easier for the hackers because the man gave them permission, but they still showed amazing skills to actually get all the information they were able to get. The girl that was able to get the baby In the back round was actually pretty intelligent with her planning. Her plan was not really breaking codes but more or less just pressuring the operator into giving her the information. The thing that scared me from that altercation wasn’t her ability to act and play like a distressed house wife. What stood out to me was the fact that the operator on the phone was able to so easily just give over the information to someone who offered no proof of identification, password, or anything else of that sort. When someone is thinking about getting hacked they shouldn’t just think about who’s trying to hack them, they should also think about who they are trusting with their information. Most people are actually completely unaware of the fact that Facebook and twitter have the right to take and sell all the information they can obtain from your account and give it to advertisers and other people who are willing to pay for them.
    Now the second hacker seemed a lot more advanced than the first one did. He was able to set up fake software updates and other popups to hit the mans core machine right in his own lap. The segment of the clip where he mentioned that he was taking pictures of the man through his laptop was pretty god damn terrifying to me. Of course the main concern in stealing money or passwords, but being watched 24/7 is the absolute worst thing to make you paranoid about accepting anything online. Or on your desktop even. I wouldn’t go as far as putting a post it note on my camera (like the article says I should, but I also do not believe that I am immune to the world of hackers. That is why I like to use technology all the time, but in the most basic ways possible. I do what I need to do and then I get off, because I know that one stupid meaningless click could lead me down a path of no return.

  7. Li You April 15, 2016 at 5:27 pm #

    Computer users have a camera, computer users are often in the use of a variety of computer with camera. However, hackers like a computer user’s camera. They invade computer users, piggybacking on camera to the appearance of computer users and the proliferation of computer users of all kinds of data. It brought great trouble to computer users: personal privacy and work data reveal, etc. For laptop users, not only face a desktop computer users also safe hidden trouble, and because the laptops are built into the camera, once planted remote piggybacking on camera Trojans, regardless of their own data, even one’s own body, movements are exposed. So laptop users for the preventive measures on the basis of the above, but also look after their own camera, for a camera for our network of life bring convenient at the same time, also some more security.
    From the purchase stage first, for some are preparing to upgrade the user, this section is worth a look. Camera has become a standard laptop, small to 10 inch netbook, big to 17 inches in this game, there are cameras. Some notebook design very human, on the hardware structure of cameras to consider safety factor. Such as in front of the camera lens design a slide switch, can cover the lens; And such as to turn the camera designed to shape, convenient adjustment of shooting Angle, and to turn the camera to the back when not in use. So, it is recommended that the buyers when the design is also as the point of choose and buy into consideration. Camera lens can be turned off, or camera can reverse it. Also, some laptop camera still have working status indicator light design, such as the camera is in a state of work, the indicator lights up. When you not take the initiative to use camera, if the indicator lights up, that means the camera must be illegal calls. Although not all laptop on the hardware design of the function of security protection, but almost all models with camera security monitoring software. Suggest user after installation system, from the driver CD or laptop from laptop web site, find the software. Camera security monitoring software will run in the background as the operating system boot, and displayed on the status bar icon. When the camera is to use the software will be through the change of the icon to notify the user. Finally if you are worried about your camera monitoring software is not reliable, so, here introduce you to one of the most direct, the simplest solution: use a card, fold into the U type, and then pour on the notebook screen edge, blocking the camera. In this way, the world was clean, again much Trojan program also take your camera department.

  8. Jalen Leacock April 15, 2016 at 6:01 pm #

    This article shows how dangerous the digital world is, you literally could lose everything if you do not protect your personal information. In this article we can see how easy it is for somebody to steal all your information. In order to prove this Manoush Zomorodi allow, “systems, exploit vulnerabilities, take advantage of weaknesses and report back to us what you found so we could fix it.’ And I thought, ‘What if I could do the personal version of that?” This was a really eye-opening for him in general because he was able to see how silly he was and how easy it was to get his information.
    In order to understand this article Malware is an abbreviated term meaning “malicious software.” This is software that is specifically designed to gain access or damage a computer without the knowledge of the owner. There are various types of malware including spyware, key loggers, true viruses, and worm. Hackers use things like this to get or personal information out of our computers. For example in the article I believe that hacker sent him a link say to install something on his computer. However once he install the program on his computer it gave the hacker full access to anything on his computer whether it is his password or his bank information, it basically allowed him to have full control over his life. He could literally masquerade as this person and open new credit cards in his name and buy whatever basically making him penniless and homeless.
    Another way hackers can get your information is through social experiments, “A social experiment is a research project conducted with human subjects in the real world.” In case a woman was used in order to act like she was his wife so that she could gain access to his account by basically saying that she was his wife but she had not been added to the account yet. This ruse allowed her to not only get into his account but also change the password, effectively locking him out of his own account. This frightens me because you don’t even have to be a real hacker to do this you just got to have some sweet talking skills and a decent plan.
    Another thing that scares me is how hackers can find out information that you would have never thought of through your post on any social media site. In this case a hacker blew up a picture that he posted of his dog and found his address. Imagine if this happened with a stalker of yours and they were able to find out where you lived. This could put your life and those around you lives in danger. This is frightening because at any moment someone could find where you live that easily. This teaches you to watch what you put on social media because it could give up anything about you that you may not want people to know.
    In conclusion your personal information is at risk if you don’t protect yourself

  9. Felicia Benjamin April 15, 2016 at 6:56 pm #

    My Father has a sticker permanently placed over his Mac camera. He has warned me to follow his lead but as an everyday ignorant consumer I reside in the realm where I believe computer hacking will not happen to me. This is how many people in today’s modern tech abundant society think despite the fact that we live in an advanced technology influenced society. Tech users learn how to not use the internet as a form of second nature, and we do not even think twice about not clicking the ads on the side of the screen. Wow, this video is alarming! These hackers we able to easily access this man’s entire machine, and essentially this man’s entire life. I do not even know what I would do if someone were watching me in my daily life, in my dorm room. Society praises technology and technology has been incorporated into aspect of life. As a result members of society are becoming more aware of the progress and the hindrance that technology can have on society overall.
    The director of the CIA has been hacked, yet we still continue to think we are invincible against hackers. The only reason why everyday ordinary tech users have developed this mindset is because we feel we are not important and as a result we can fly under the radar of hacking. We think no one would want to hack us, since we have no valuable information regarding anything of major significance. However, our lives and personal information are exactly what the common hacker wants to access. Unfortunately everyone can become a potential target and the best way to avoid being hacked is to prevent optimal situations that are present and cause people to become a victim of a hacker. Hacking is a serious potential threat. In an instance your life, resources, and reputation could all be destroyed by someone pretending to be you. There is a common saying the best defense is a good offense, and this is what many fail to do in our society. We believe it would not happen to us and then we are surprised that we have become targets since we were not proactive. Individuals believe either hacking cannot happen to them or that they cannot prevent hacking, but both of these assumptions are wrong.
    As avid users of technology we need not to be oblivious to the potential danger that hacking can pose. Therefore tech users need to be vigilant, proactive, and on the offense against hackers. The reason why hacking overall can happen to anyone is because hackers have expertise of computers that far surpasses the ordinary person and hacking has evolved to play on natural emotions. On one hand it is comforting to know that the primary antagonist against civilians are ordinary hackers rather than data thieves and the government but this is not an excuse to become a victim. It is also comforting to know that something as simple as an additional pin protect civilians from hacking. With that said companies that provide technological services should also be proactive to prevent hacking. They should be on their A game because their entire service surrounds consumer technology and therefore they should make safety and protection of consumer information a main priority. In addition to protection, both civilians and companies also need to practice awareness. Understanding the problem and implementing precautionary measures are the first step to combatting hackers, but until society brings awareness, significance, and importance to the issue of civilian hacking the issue will continue to be regarded as a theoretical problem. Everyone is a potential target, but knowledge and proactivity can decrease the risk of getting hacked.

  10. Sheikh Elahi April 15, 2016 at 7:18 pm #

    Its really funny, as time progresses, it seems our privacy is disappearing. No matter what we do, everything nowadays has either a camera or a microphone. Its impossible to have a conversation unless your are in the wilderness with no personal belongings. Hackers are now able to access any camera on any device giving us no privacy. Even the U.S government can access these cameras as well. Everyone can be a potential target and the only way to be safe is to be aware. Hackers are extremely skilled now and can access anything that you post online. Its a good idea to watch anything that you post online because it may come back to haunt you later. People always say, that would never happen to me, but when it does they are the ones complaining. Passwords, Pictures, Information all things which hackers can access within minutes.

  11. Kira Williams April 15, 2016 at 7:26 pm #

    Online privacy is becoming a bigger and bigger issue in today’s society because there are so many hackers out there trying to get personal information to do whatever they want with it. Cameras in computers and laptops are the same problem. They can be hacked into and turned on without the users’ knowledge and they are visible to the hacker at any given time. It is beyond privacy, over stepping moral standards by digitally stalking someone. What is captured can also be shared which is even more off putting.
    It is a good point made in Note to Self that the issue of hacking is no longer just directed at the government or corporate entities. They have people to protect their information but everyday people do not necessarily have that same expertise, so this broadcast can be a good learning experience. The journalist must have earned a lot of respect to subjugate himself to this penetration test because he became so vulnerable. I did not realize that there are two kinds of hacking, conventional codes and then conning people. But if you think about it, they serve the same purpose. ‘Social engineering’ sounds so much more ethical, which to me makes what hackers do even more deplorable. The littlest things are compromised when a hacker gets into your information. I would have never guessed that someone would think so far out of the box to enhance a photo of a dog collar to get a person’s address, but I guess that is why I am not a hacker.
    Going further, there needs to be more security on the business side so there are specific requirements to get passwords and information of the like. Hackers can be determined though so they probably will find and possess the information they need to, to get anything else they need or want. I do not think a wife under any circumstances except for death should have access to her spouse’s account no matter how desperate she sounds. That is purely a security issue. It is disturbing to follow a story of a man being manipulated due to emotional intelligence. With just a fake website a hacker can have access to literally everything on the computer.
    It is a relief that they provide ways to protect ourselves and they can be as simple as letting the companies that have personal information stored in an account do not give any of that information. It seems like that should be an obvious option, but I did not think about it because I would assume that those companies would not give that information. This opens a lot of eyes to how vulnerable society is to hackers. Since everything has computers in today’s society we have to be more protected because there are a lot more avenues for hackers to travel, whether it be state, corporate or personal. It is always good to be prepared, even if ordinary people are not the main targets for professional hackers. It is a good point that other people with the motivation will do it.

  12. Austin Lopes April 15, 2016 at 7:51 pm #

    Reading articles like this brings me great interest, because I am one of those naïve technology users who have no idea how to protect myself or of what dangers I am in. Technology is an awesome asset to have, because we can dip into the future and become more efficient, faster and stable. Using these advancements allows us to become even greater then what we are. However, it is absolutely absurd to see how bad the down side could be. Most people have their life information within these devices, such as social security numbers, financial statements and bank accounts. With such private information like this hackers and others can do a lot of damage and change people’s lives. However, most of the time people believe not them, they do not mean anything to hackers or they believe they are safe enough as long as they do not answer or attend to fishy emails or sites. This idea of sufficient security is false. We are open to various attacks, without even knowing and reading this article in what they could do is even scarier. For example, as I am currently typing this blog post I am staring back at my camera freakishly thinking someone may be taking pictures of me right now and I do not even know it. To say the least, they will have plenty of pictures of me picking my nose like the guy in the article said they caught him. Technology is all fun in games, however it is not a joke, and we live in a society full of it so we must protect ourselves or else it could lead into the collapse of an entire society, which I believe nobody would want. According to cnn.com, hackers have exposed the personal information of 110 million Americans — roughly half of the nation’s adults — in the last 12 months alone. If those numbers do not scare you I do not know what else will. That is in the United States alone now imagine worldwide, these are serious cases, because then sooner or later these hackers can have potential of being a dominant force. Being able to access any computer and information they want hackers have the ability to access valuable assets that may be held against companies in order to act in compliance with what the hackers want. Putting power like this into hands of cruel people like this is deadly because everything in the world is now ran on technological devices. Having said that, they should offer more and more courses of educating the youth and present day users of technology in how to protect it to its maximum potential. Offering a course such as this may help trim down numbers extremely, because as soon as people are exposed to such numbers and effects they are surely to act differently in how they care for their information. On the other hand, it may back fire because some people may simply not care and not want to act on it, however at least we did our part in informing people.

  13. wenqi zhang April 15, 2016 at 8:31 pm #

    Both of the be fond of of technology and money temptation, or political interests, hackers main intrusion and attack technology development speed is accelerated significantly. Security manufacturers also seems very hard, but it is always walking up and down on their own sales interests, from the initial youngest sample (FW firewall, IDS intrusion detection, anti-virus AV), to the present a unified security gateway (UTM), vulnerability scanning, performance audit, authentication, encryption transmission (VPN), Web application firewall (WAF), virtual browser… Full of beautiful things in eyes of security products, but ignored the reinforcement of the server itself, because to protect data, services are all here, it is the ultimate goal of hackers invasion.
    Due to the popularity of notebook computer, more and more users find the importance of personal computer information security, when your computer is stolen, robbed, being black, or because of an irresistible force by others, how do you ensure that your computer and minimum information loss, and its own secret information is acquired by others, it is worth all the laptop users attention. “Yan Zhao door” incident to the average PC user is a wake-up call: who doesn’t have some important information? Who doesn’t have some belong to your “secret”? From worries will even produce some “fear”, who also don’t know when and what unexpected event will happen in their own, therefore, in view of the personal computer security problems, here to summarize a set of security solutions, for your reference.
    First, using encryption software. Thousands of hidden treasure is manufacturer brand of Guangdong paper technology co., LTD., is a type of network information security leak prevention software, also called “hidden treasure high-end artifact” privacy protection, USES the Windows system kernel and the underlying driver technology, through the file encryption, process technology, such as classification and port control leak proof protection for the whole document, facilitate the safety management of computer files, to prevent unauthorized access, violence, invasion of the confidential information leakage caused by accident, to ensure the safety of the personal information resources.
    Second, the local information classification and grading. To manage personal information, first to classify their information, personal information includes: email, document (PDF, DOC, XLS, PPT, TXT), file (other types), photos, files, video files, etc. Then, the information in accordance with the security levels, three levels, the most confidential information as “confidential”, followed by “secret”, no confidential files for “ordinary”.
    Third, account security, System not to join the domain, the local computer only set an administrator, and set a password, enter the system need a password login, commonly used network service account also need to use the password to log in, on the local computer and network service account password security, please refer to the moonlight blog another article “ten commonly used network password security protection measures.
    After the operation process, even if our computer lost, others can only get the computer local normal file, and don’t have access to save important secret files on the server, so we can avoid the secrets of their data access by others, to ensure the information security of the personal computer.

  14. Gianna Tomeo April 15, 2016 at 8:35 pm #

    Technology is such a crazy thing. We keep so much personal information on them that if someone were able to hack into our devices most people would be at a complete loss. Especially now because there is a way to keep your credit cards on file through an online wallet app or through things like ApplePay. The thought that someone could be spying on you through your webcam at any moment is such a scary thought. Many people do not realize the severity of the issue, and they are stubborn and do not take the necessary precautions like placing a sticky note over their webcam or putting a tough passcode on their cell phones. It is just like any other tragedy. You do not realize that it actually happens to people until it happens to you…and hopefully it is not too late. I was reading some of the other student’s comments to this article and the comment that Felicia made really caught my attention. If the director of the CIA has been hacked before then that should throw up a red flag that we are definitely not immune to this crime and we need to take precaution with our technology. It is only naïve to think that we as the general population will not be a target of a hacker simply because we think that we are not important enough or have that good of information on our devices to want to hack. Most of us have used our credit cards on our phones to pay for something at some point. And all of us have personal information that we keep on our devices. A hacker can get access to all of that if we make it easy to hack into our devices, and why wouldn’t they? Money is money, and if the hacker has a personal reason for wanting to hack someone then I am pretty sure that any personal information that they can get their hands on about their target will be useful. So it is very stupid to think that we are out of range to be a victim of a hacker. I watched this movie called Abduction a few years ago that is about a high school senior that realizes that his parents are not his real parents when he finds out that his picture is on a website for missing children that people think have been abducted. One of the scenes in the movie is when people who are trying to abduct him are watching him through his open laptop webcam…obviously he did not read this article and put a sticker over his camera like he is supposed to because people were able to watch his every move in his private time and that is how they knew where they could find him. Reading this article just makes the concept of webcam hacking even more real in my mind. I am now determined to put something that covers all of my computer webcams because the thought of someone being able to watch everything I do is terrifying to me.

  15. Michael Quinto-Lopez April 15, 2016 at 8:43 pm #

    How comfortable are you with putting your personal information on the world-wide web. In modern times, putting personal information online is a risk to everyone. Not only are large businesses at risk to getting valuable exposed, but so are regular people like you and I! According to this online article, “You should put a post-it over your laptop camera”, there are numerous ways in which a hacker can get into your personal information. This article provides us with a method in which several businesses use in order to improve their protection against everyday hackers. The test called “penetration test”, is a test that many businesses use, Coca-Cola in this instance, in order to prepare in case of a treat from a hacker. The business hires a hacker to try to break into the company’s system and inform them of any potential risks and improvement that can be made. I believe that this practice for a business to prepare for a hack risk, is something beneficial and informative. If a business want to be protected in best way, a penetration test is the best way to go.

    There is an audio display within this article that tells the story of a man whose personal information is at risk. It is said within this audio that there two ways in which a hacker can be a problem to certain people, it’s either by malicious code or by a more traditional manner called, social engineering. This man posted a picture of his dog and hacker enhanced the imaged to the point that they were able to see the dog owner’s address. When they were informed of this information along with his email, these hackers began to call this man’s service providers such as Comcast and Time Warner. One of the hackers, called the man’s cell phone companies and asserted that she was the man’s wife with the help of a background video of a baby crying. The attempt was successful, the company exposed the woman to all of the victim’s personal information. It’s quite worrisome to know that people would go to these measures and beyond in order to invade one’s information, and it just starts from here.

    That was the first methodology tactic in order to hack into someone’s private information, there is a second called white hat hacker. This is someone hired by companies in order to identify the person or businesses weak spots. He hired someone to do this to him and the hacker was very successful at controlling the victim’s computer. As a result, the hacker was able to see the victim every time he was using his laptop via the laptop camera. He also was informed of all of the victim’s valuable and personal information. The hacker was viewing victim for two days without any suspicion. Now we get to the main point, should one be afraid to the point that they would want to put a post it over their laptop camera? I believe so. To be at a risk of one getting hold on personal information and for them to possibly be looking at you through the camera on a laptop is really disturbing. People should be careful every time they click on something and should always have a system in order to protect them from hacker threats. I’d say how technology is evolving every day, people should update their defenses in order to secure their privacy and safety from hackers.

  16. Qi Li April 15, 2016 at 8:53 pm #

    After reading this article which is named “Why You Should put a Post-it over Your Laptop Camera”, it reminds me the importance of internet privacy. In my opinion, I think this world today seems to have no privacy on the Internet, despite the Governments effort to help the consumer regain their privacy. In 1997 the government passed the Consumer Internet Privacy Protection Act. Through this bill, the consumer has the right to all information that an Internet company has on them. The Internet Company cannot sell the information of that consumer without that consumer’s written consent. The bill sounds really good doesn’t it? If the bill is so great, how is it that our private information is still getting out there? Well, let’s take a closer look. 

    According to an article that I found through Yahoo!, companies are using the consumer’s information as a company asset just in case the company was to go bankrupt. In the article it talks of how Amazon.com has reviewed it privacy policies and has decided to just get ready to sell anything they have on a consumer, such as; “names, shipping and billing addresses, credit card numbers, e-mail addresses, employers, gift wish lists, Social Security Numbers…” and so on and so forth. Isn’t that scary,one day, a company is doing fine, getting all the information that they can on a person and saying that all information is secured, then the next day, they are going bankrupt and selling the information to whoever has the largest bid. Who would’ve thought that when you went to buy that thing you really wanted off the Internet, your information was being stored so it could be sold? How thoughtless of them. For me, I don’t give out any information besiege des my name, and who knows who has that. 

    You may ask yourself, where does the Internet Privacy Act of 1997 play in this? I am wondering the same thing. Well, it obviously doesn’t play a large role; Amozon.com has stopped letting their customers decline the option of letting their information be sold. Where is the government? Why aren’t they stepping up? I thought that the reasoning behind this entire act was to protect consumers, I don’t see any protection at all. There was a statement in the article that was previously mentioned that just took me by surprise. Patty Smith made it in regard to customer information, she said: “We treat customer data with great care and consideration,” she said, “and we will continue to do so going forward.” 

    How can she say that? They won’t even let the customers who were on the database before they changed to policy to delete their information. They need to have more consideration for their customers, not just their data. Sometimes these companies only think of one thing, MONEY. If they would just think of the customer’s needs before the “M” word, they would be getting more. The Internet has become a sea of sharks, devouring everything in sight, yes, it has it ups, but it really has a lot of downs.

    I feel that if the government was so worried about the consumer enough to pass a bill protecting the consumer’s information, they should be enforcing it. What these companies are doing is illegal and immoral. I feel that they should be punished for their crimes, but in a way tha t doesn’t put them in jail, we already have enough people in there. Make them pay, literally, for what they have done. Pay the consumer what they got for their information. Also, if the consumer agrees to let others sell their information, shouldn’t they get a piece of that? After all, it is their life that is being sold. The world has become a greedy world. Everyone is money hungry, always looking for the quick buck. I honestly do not think that anything is going to be done to stop these people from commit ting these crimes. One of these days, something is going to backfire, and everything is just going to blow up, (just a figure of speech). When the day comes that something is done about all this junk that is out there, someone tell me about it. 

  17. Bianca Vigo April 15, 2016 at 8:57 pm #

    This articles goes to show that there is no such thing as privacy in today’s world. Everything we do is recorded, EVERYTHING and it is truly scary. Each time one uses the ATM, credit/debit card, chats on the internet, visits the doctor or even make a phone call they leave races behind leaving privacy to be a major concern. A family member of mine had trouble with installing the adobe flash player onto her computer, a MacBook air so she contacted the Tech Company and they showed her exactly what to do from their end. During that time she was literally freaking out because she couldn’t believe how advanced technology has become, it still amazes me as well. My neighbor has a camera for her Wii game which her kids use mostly, which she covers when it is not in use because she’s scared that there might be people watching what they do, both girls are between the ages of seven (7) and ten (10). I’m behind her on that because anything is really possible. The internet is so scary that you have to be careful about what you say on social media as well as the images and video you post. WhatsApp recently enabled an end to end encryption which allows only you and the other party or parties involved in the conversation to have access to the conversation, not even NASA has access to it; look at the privacy Gods answering our prayers. My mom always hated the thought of me video chatting, she’d always tell me that there were people other than the individual I’m video chatting with watching but at that age I thought she was joking until I got to high school, it started making sense and I am now more cautious of what I share over the internet because of how deadly it is

  18. Liz Martinez April 16, 2016 at 1:41 pm #

    Ok, this article made me feel so paranoid you can’t even understand. I don’t have anything on my laptop protecting myself from being seen, but I will now! I feel kind of stupid that I didn’t know people could just break through all of your systems even with passwords, and fire walls. This was so creepy. How can personal companies like your cell phone provider or television provider just give out your information like that? It’s absurd!!! Don’t they know that people can hack you that way? I just couldn’t believe it. Anyone with even a moderate understanding of the human psyche can hack into your whole life, just by pretending to be helpless, or faking their identity.
    I know that nothing you ever put on the internet is safe, and I know to be careful with what you post, as well of what others may post about you, but this was just nuts! Hey got his address from a dog tag… a dog tag!!! This is the kind of stuff you see happen in spy movies and unrealistic television shows, the ones where you immediately assume that could never happen to you. It’s very unsettling, but I’m so glad I know about this now.
    I’m glad that this experiment was done. I feel like anyone who sees this is now will be much more conscious of themselves now, but also more paranoid (like I am at the time) and feel less safe in their day to day lives.
    What I found most disturbing of all, was that our computers can be so easily hacked, that someone can turn on your webcam from an alternate location, and see everything you’re doing, when you’re doing it. That’s like every perverts ideal stalking tool. I used to think people who hide their webcams with tape were crazy, but damn, that actually can happen, and not just by military intelligence, but by anyone who has access to you through the internet. This was just so disturbing. I just put some red duct tape over my camera, and am hoping and praying that this wasn’t actually happening before I did so.
    There are some really messed up people out there, and I’ll be showing this to everyone in my family as well as those in my friend group. Now I’m just curious to see if the police can trace that activity, and find out who actually does this, in order to steal someone’s identity. If they can, then those conspiracy theorists who say that big brother is always watching you may just be onto something. If you can undo these types of hackings, then there’s nothing stopping you from committing these same types of crimes in the first place.
    At the end of the day, we all need to be a little more aware of what’s out there, and study’s like these are there helping us to do that. I’m glad I read this, and thankful that Shannon posted it, because if not, I really would’ve had no way of learning about this on my own.

  19. Neeraja Thakur April 17, 2016 at 3:26 pm #

    We can never imagine the length people can go to to hack a life and take it over. These cameras can work both ways and allow someone, even completely random, to look through the screen and be able to track ones every move. Spying, stalking, and tracking one;s every move through the internet is now possible, and even easier for those who have a camera on their laptop, which there are a very few amount of people who don’t have a camera.
    I used to not pay much attention to internet stalking, and not just what I do and browse for on my computer, but what I do in my physical life through my computer. Then I started hearing more and more stories about it and there was also CSI Cyber which showed several cases of crimes being committed through the internet and laptop camera access. I then realized that these crimes are real but more especially that they more common than I thought they were and can be much more dangerous.
    Safety and privacy are being more and more disturbed nowadays and are in fact being less and less respected; anyone can see anything you’re doing anytime they want to. By laptop cameras, phone cameras, laptop and phone microphones, and even in public through other devices that aren’t phone and laptop related, we are being watched. We are being stalked, and the most we can do about it is put a post it on our laptop camera.

  20. Daniel Folta April 18, 2016 at 10:44 am #

    After listening to this podcast, I quickly looked up some statistics about personal hacking. Apparently, as of 2014, 47% of Americans have been hacked! That would probably include me. Just this weekend I downloaded a Power-point template online onto my computer. It looked safe enough, but was it? Maybe I have already been hacked! But I am just a nobody, right? Why steal from a ‘broke college kid’ when a hacker can spend their time on someone with substantial assets? I mean, if a teenager could hack the Director of the CIA, then why me?

    There are two issues with the above outlook.

    The first is that America is moving from a ‘physical world’ to a ‘digital world.’ What I mean by that is simply that our information is stored and shared via digital methods, instead of through physical ones. This information can be anything from what flavor ice-cream we like to our bank account number. I have personal information that I access via the internet that I do not have available in a physical form. With this shift from a ‘physical world’ to a ‘digital world,’ the battlefields and weapons we use change from physical ones to digital ones. Over the course of history, human nature has not gotten any less base, any less primitive, though the conditions in which we live in have developed. Just like it was necessary for Vikings to grow up trained in the use of swords and shields, it is becoming increasingly necessary for us to grow up trained in the use of technological warfare. Of course, we no longer live in a society where everyone has to fight; but would you rather be a pawn or a player? Why leave your fate up to merciless chance?

    The second issue I would like to raise is a bit of a stretch but (hopefully) hypothetically reasonable. Capitalism tends to create economies of scale. In other words, the more products are produced, the less impact the fixed expenses have, creating a cost advantage in favor of producing as many products that can be produced, subject to demand. Right now, demand for hackers is relatively low; they are generally used to hack a company (like Coca-Cola) so that the company can find out its vulnerabilities and improve its technological defenses. But if a hacker can ‘become’ the victim, imagine how much information he could gather on a hack that targeted multiple people on a massive scale at a time cost advantage. Right now, it seems that hackers use phone calls to access their victims’ most personal information; that personal call would simply not be able to be made to tons of people at a single time. But an email is not any that much different; just create another email address using the same username as the victim on different server, then contact whatever company via email in order to access that personal information. Phone calls are becoming increasingly scarce while emails replace them. Once a hacker has the ability take that information via email, all he/she has to do is to organize previously gathered information into a kind of excel spreadsheet with functions that input (between words in a typed up message) whatever information that company asks for. This way, the hacker would be able to hit perhaps 100 people at once, clean out their bank accounts, and live the ‘good life.’ There are two problems with this hypothesis, however. One is that if the hacker is not careful, the FBI would come right on his/her heals. The second is that the hacker would have to make sure that his victims are not concentrated in only a few companies (which, considering the oligarchy of cell phone companies, is likely); otherwise, the company may smell the fishiness and ruin the hack.

    Even with all of this being said, I am having difficulty convincing myself that I should take strong measures to bolster up my technological defenses. The 99.9% statistic cited in the podcast is looking very friendly. I read one article, and everything it says seems to be really important. Then I go to a conference about environmental care, and I feel that I have to get involved in that. There are so many things that are so important that I as an individual simply do not have time to do if I want to head in a bee-line path to success. I really relate to Manoush Zomorodi when she says, “I never actually signed up for that self-defense class in college.” I keep hesitating to take the measures because of time, but then I realize how quick it would be to set up that PIN. The real clincher for me is in that I do not want to be a pawn; call it ego, but it has its perks.

  21. Bruce Knops April 18, 2016 at 1:06 pm #

    The theme behind this podcast is very scary and worrying to the average computer user, while there is really not much of a motivation for people to hack into my webcam, it is still scary to see how easy it would really be to do. Especially because there is no way for the person that is being hacked to know that they are really being hacked. The tester in this case said he had no idea that the hacker had hacked into his webcam and was taking pictures of him every few minutes then sending the pictures to the tester’s email account. By gaining access to the tester’s webcam the hacker was then able to identify the tester’s location and who he was with at any time that the computer was open and turned on. That is very invasive and unsettling especially considering that this tester claims that he felt he had a very secure internet safety by using password managers and elaborate passwords for all of his accounts.
    The idea of a pen test in this article is very interesting. Basically companies hire hackers to attempt to break into and hack their systems, use loopholes, and take advantage of their weaknesses. The companies then ask the hackers to report back with their weaknesses so that the company could fix those weaknesses.
    What I find interesting about this article is the various different ways that a hacker can exploit systems in order to get information, put it together and then reap havoc on any one’s life. The podcast talks about how the hacker actually got the tester’s address. They found a picture that he had posted to a social media account. The picture that the tester posted was a picture of his dog, seems innocent and irrelevant right. The hackers were able to enlarge and enhance the picture and then read the dog’s tag on its collar to find the owner’s address. Once the hackers had the tester’s address they now could start calling utility companies pretending to be the tester himself and get more and more information.
    This is when the podcast begins its talks about the idea of social hacking. The tester said that the hackers that he hired had a woman call his phone provider with a video of babies crying in the background. The woman was acting frantic trying to get the account situation straightened out with the babies crying and trying to quite the fake babies and constantly rushing the phone operator, telling her that her husband has been asking her to take care of this for weeks and she needs it done today. This woman was then able to con the phone operator at the phone company into giving away all of the testers personal and private information. All the caller did was say that she was married to the tester and she didn’t remember the password and he forgot to add her as an account manager. The operator then gave the fake wife all of the account information and she then changed the account password, locking the tester out of his own phone company account.
    In the end, the password manager is what really allowed the hackers to gain easy access to everything on the tester’s computer. The password manager was accessed by the hackers and they were able to gain access to every account that the tester had on his manager. This included his bank accounts, social media account, investment account, and brokerage account. Had this been a real hacker, this tester’s life would have been turned upside down, his identity would have been stolen along with all of his money. And he would have had no idea that any of this was going on until it was to late.
    This podcast really opens my eyes, it really makes me want to not do anything on my computer or use any passwords on a computer that you wouldn’t mind if people could access. However today almost everything is based online, there is no escaping it. Our banking, investments, personal lives, and identity are all stored in computers for almost everyone. And as this experiment shows it really is not that difficult for a hacker to obtain all of this information if they really want to. Our only hope to keeping our privacy is that we aren’t going to be the ones targeted, or that a breakthrough will come in security. However even if there is a breakthrough in security technology there will be hackers that eventually figure out how to get through that and we will be back to square one once again.

  22. Parth Parikh April 19, 2016 at 1:45 pm #

    I would not go as far as some of the comments in this post and say that the cameras and video recorders we have on our mobile devices and laptops are meant to tarnish us and there is no good use for having a camera when someone can access it from overseas and do whatever they want to our phones. Companies like Google and Apple are well-intentioned companies that do not have the time and patience to go through our cameras and see what we are doing in our daily lives. There are, of course, less chances that someone is hacking into our phones and devices and that there is information on our phones that a great many of the population would want to know.
    I do agree that there are loopholes in our devices and that there are ways to access it from another device without our notice or our approval of such acts. As long as everything is online and all of our products and its backup is on an electronic platform, there will always be loopholes and ways people can access whatever they want to access at any time and in any place. There is no stopping these hackers from violating our privacy and checking on our stuff if they were given a chance, until someone hacks them and they go from the offensive to the defensive about their information. The more we send our information out, such as typing in information to apply for a new credit card or when you enroll in a bank account using your personal information, the more our information is spread all over the world, and sooner rather than later our information may fall in the wrong hands and there is nothing we can do to stop it unless we ourselves leave the worldwide web.
    I am not going to go out on a limb like many of my classmates and say that I’m going to stop taking pictures or posting my stuff online so no one can track me down, because I know for a fact that it is not possible, for me at least. I am always going to post funny stuff I see in my daily life or post something relating to what I heard someone say when I am walking down the street. What I will do, though, is limit the times I apply for things online, like credit cards and bank accounts, where I have to include my social security number or my personal information that I would not even tell my best friend.
    With applications like Little Snitch and other ways to prevent hacking and digital takeover, there are still loopholes to access a phone and its contents (ask Apple: they still do not know how the government got into the shooter’s phone using a third party source). I just hope and pray that I do not become someone’s enemy and they use their connections to hire a hacker to get my information. I plan to keep my personal data to myself.

  23. kalenga kitenge April 20, 2016 at 11:28 am #

    Technology is increasing in ways, I could have not imagined. The digital age is a blessing to me because without technology, I would have not been able to do half of the things I do for education, I would have not been able to do half of the things I do in my daily life. This kind of technology will advance the future for the generation to come. However this podcast talks about the negative aspects of technology such as hackers, and how people should not feel so secure with their technology because you never know who is about to hack you and take away all your information. I am always cautious with technology, this is because I understand how ease a person can get into your computer and damage your life. I have always wanted to understand and go into depth with technology because I can avoid this happening to anyone or me.
    I get really paranoid with the ways companies and the government are able to hack into anything we have such as our laptops and phones. I get paranoid that companies and the government are able to know what we are doing at anytime of the day. I feel as if we do not have the freedom in the land we call the free. We are not able to do what we wish without being spied on or being stopped just in case we cause harm. I feel as if our human rights are not being protected properly because companies and the government can easily know what your doing and put a stop to it at anytime, any day and wherever you are. How can we have the freedom to say what we want to say for example on twitter without the government or companies being superstition? I have read somewhere that an individual wrote something on twitter and they were forced to shut down their twitter page because of their comment, how is this fair? This is why everyone should be very careful with what they put on social media because you never know who is watching you, it might even be your next employer.
    I think it should be an essential for people to know more about technology, because it does not only help you but everyone in the society. Everyone should be able to stop hackers from getting information from him or her computer or phone. I mean not every hacker will hack into an average individual on the street because the value of an average person is worth one tenth than the information of a big business. However, if you value your information then you must learn how to stop the hackers and protect themself against the hackers.

  24. Caitlin Koska April 21, 2016 at 4:55 pm #

    The article “Why you Should Put a Post-it Over Your Laptop Camera” discusses the process of hacking and how worried people should be. This Note to Self episode was actually terrifying. First, they found the man’s address from a picture he had posted of his dog on Twitter, that they then blew up and were able to see his address. With this they could find much more information on him. The hackers then used a YouTube video of some babies crying and a woman posing to be the man’s wife to call his phone company, receive his information, and change his account password. These methods are social engineering methods that use no coding or computer hacking, but receive information with emotional intelligence. Another type, usually called a “white hat” hacker, hacked his computer using fake popups asking for his credentials, and was able to gain access to everything. The hacker was able to install and app that would take a picture of him every two minutes through his webcam and he gained access into his security cameras on the outside of his house. The hacker would’ve been able to completely rob him of everything he had. However, there is hope. You can set a pin for your phone company that only you would know, put a post-it note over your web camera, or download Little Snitch that notifies you when your computer is communicating with another computer.

    Yes, hacking is very scary to many people because it is so unknown. There is not much you can do to stop a hacker if they really want to get your information, so people feel pretty hopeless. At the same time however, it is very unlikely that you are going to be hacked. About 99.99% of people will never be hacked, simply because it is not worthwhile for the hackers to hack you. You are not valuable enough. In the episode, they compare being hacked to being attacked by a martial art expert. We are aware that there are people trained in martial arts that could severely hurt us, but the likely hood of them doing anything is very slim. The likelihood of being hacked may be very small, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do anything to protect yourself just in case. Adding a pin or placing a post it note over your webcam takes about a minute at most and can save you from economic damage, the spreading of personal information, or even having embarrassing photos leaked.

    In my opinion, the everyday person shouldn’t be overly concerned about being hacked. High profile people or major companies however, should be terrified. Hackers have a huge incentive to hack these types of people because they have large amounts of money and power. Even if a hacker just wanted to hack a celebrity to post offensive things, it could be destructive to the person’s entire career. Destroying a celebrities image can be just as detrimental as robbing them. And this goes for large companies as well, CEOs need to keep their image to keep their business thriving. Consumers aren’t afraid of leaving a company and moving on, destroying the company’s sales.

  25. Michael W. Alescio April 21, 2016 at 8:51 pm #

    Benefits of technology are incredible. No one in their right mind would ever not want the improvements we have had in technology. We have created servers where everyone in the world can communicate. Cell phones have done this any even more. Cell phones now anyone can communicate with each other all the time. Millions of jobs are based around technology whether it is the development of it or the setting up or the maintenance of it. Technology has no doubt changed our world for the better. But with the vast improvements made in technology we also have serious issues that came along with them.
    The downfalls of technology are pretty severe as well. Hacking, social media violence and a dependence on technology are only some of the downfalls that come along. To stat with hacking, like said in the voice over, hackers can hack into others cameras and watch what you are doing if on camera. This is not only kind of creepy but is a serious felinely. Next social media has also brought great things to the world. It allows people to keep in touch with massive amounts of people and better keep long distance relationships. However, it has created a whole new era of cyber bullying, and is often a waste of time and creates a lack of productivity in people. There was a study done on people that use social media’s like Facebook and Twitter and those that do not. The study was done to determine who was happier, and those who did not use these social media’s were actually happier. The other downfall to technology is how reliant our world has become on technology. Many big corporations no longer can run without their phones and laptops. So many companies are solely based on the computer. Companies like Apple and Microsoft make billions of technology.
    Overall phone hacking is extremely dangerous. Many know how much personal information is stored on their phones. People store their social security number, their bank account information, and many more other personal information all on their phone. This is why when a phone is hacked into, it is a really big deal. Many users also have passwords automatically saved on their phone, so once the hacker gets through the main lock screen on a phone, they are now able to access of many things.
    My interest in Information Technology Management. Recently I have decided to major in ITM in business. I believe that not only does technology run our country and world already, but it is only supposed to grow in the future. Everyone I talk to that work in big corporations, always say have some computer background because this will always guarantee you a job. I also think this stuff is very interesting. To me it will be like learning a new language, the computer language. There are so many different jobs you can get with that much experience in technology. Because like I was saying before, every corporation needs computer guys. The cold hard facts are too, the people running these big corporations aren’t young guys either, and they didn’t grow up with computers. So they are always looking for people to explain technology for them and do their business on the computer for them.

  26. Eric Foley April 21, 2016 at 10:29 pm #

    Hacking has become a part of our memory since the beginnings of telephone scammers and much later the recent chain of terribly worded emails which ask for our personal information. Despite the advancement in technology, many security tools have not kept up with the growing number of hackers. The radio talk talks about many security options that one person could take in order to protect themselves from hackers, but in my opinion their needs to be better education about the ability of hackers. Many people are not aware of the many attempts of hackers to get inside their bank accounts or reach their cable provider and need to be. You could have all the security in the world, but still fall to hackers hence the CIA director. It’s important to be smart about what you say over any form of technology. Overall the message of the radio talk seems to lean in that way, but they really failed to offer anything new or informative in the developments in security.
    In the show, the man who offered himself to the hackers seemed to have nowhere near an above average idea about technology security. The very fact that he did not protect his phone accounts with passwords shows his lack of true security. All of my primary accounts for my phone, as I do not have cable other than through my parents, is protected by a password which is secure. By attempting to explain the many mistakes this man made I would probably contradict anything that I am trying to prove, but I will continue to dismantle this man’s idea of security. For me it seems odd that you would put an address on your dog unless he was prone to escaping, still there is something to be said about what you post online. I mean you could retake the picture without the address! On a side note, it is amazing to see how advanced the hacker can be by simply using a Twitter account to gain primary information about someone. Furthermore the mistake of leaving an address has now set a domino effect of vital information. The last thing I wanted to address about this man’s supposed above average knowledge of security is his mention of password protecting cable providers. THIS HAS BEEN DONE FOR YEARS! I honestly thought I was brought back in time to like 2004 with this stupidity. I know for fact that I was raised the right way in terms of security because my parents have been doing these things for years. Of course there are some mistakes I and my parents have made in terms of security, but we still have the extensive knowledge of how corrupt some people can be just to gain some information from you.
    Lastly I just wanted to address some of my knowledge relating to hacking. I have hacked several profiles of my friends, in fairly simple ways of using code to find their passwords and information. I would never use any of that information against them, but still it just goes to show that anybody can be hacker and it is important to have stellar security to combat it.

  27. Alyson Tom April 22, 2016 at 5:05 pm #

    “Why You Should Put A Post-It Over Your Laptop Camera” discusses the different ways hackers can access an individual’s personal information. I was genuinely surprised and intrigued by the podcast. It covered multiple ways to that people can get hacked while also discussing how people can protect themselves in the future. When I think of hacking I only think of the basic idea which is coding but through this I found out that hacking is much easier than I originally thought. In this article and podcast, Kevin purposely got hacked by asking hackers to perform a penetration test on himself. This is also known as a pen test and during this test companies ask hackers to deliberately hack them and find any flaws or weaknesses in their system that they can eventually fix. From this experiment, Kevin learned that aside from coding and conning people hacked through social engineering.

    I think this part surprised me the most because I realized that virtually anyone could take up some of the methods that the hackers used. These hackers got information from anything. One hacker got Kevin’s address when he enlarged a photo of his dog and focused it on the dog’s collar tags. Another hacker pretended to be Kevin’s distressed wife running errands and was able to get his password to his phone account through the phone company. She was then able to have access to all of his information and had the opportunity to block him out from it. These methods are extremely easy and I feel like if I wanted to I honestly could do some of them (not that I would.) A lot of people are extremely open with their information on Facebook and Instagram. After this I truly believe that people should take more proactive steps to insure that this does not happen to them. I believe that this type of hacking is easier to avoid by putting your social media accounts on private and contacting your utility companies to make sure that they do not give out your personal information.

    A different hacker used a more traditional and classic approach by creating a fake website and through Kevin downloading a certificate and the opening of some pop ups, the hacker was able to get access to all of his passwords and information ranging from his social security number to bank account. With all of this information, the hacker could have assumed the identity of Kevin if he wanted to. In addition he was even able to get access to his laptop camera and was able to take photos of him. I feel like this approach would be easier to avoid as a user because it involves some common sense. It sort of sounds like the scams regarding a Nigerian prince. None the less I do believe that it is smart to do simple steps to prevent hackers such as putting something over the laptop camera. I just covered my laptop camera last semester after I learned from Professor Shannon that people could see through my camera without it even turning on or alerting me. It is comforting to know that hackers will not go out of the way to get people’s information. This article was definitely eye opening as now I am more aware of how to prevent people from getting access of my information.

  28. Vincent DeBartolomeis April 22, 2016 at 5:54 pm #

    Reading this article and listening to the short podcast really opened my eyes about the possibilities of hacking and how much damage can be done to a person. The simple mistake of clicking on a phishing attempt and downloading a fake software could have completely destroyed the author’s life and put him out in the streets. I’m not completely versed in computer hacking or being safe about it but I know enough about it to be aware of it. I know not to click on links in weird emails or plug in login information on random sites but I never knew how much it could really effect a person. It was amazing how the hacker was able to obtain so much information in such a short period of time.

    Additionally, I really liked how creative the author was in trying to figure out how a hacker could affect you and how to protect yourself. In reality, the only way to if a hacker could get into your security is to hire a hacker to try to get into your security. It is very smart for corporations to do that because of the large risk that could follow if their systems are hacked. It also opens up a job market that has never been needed before. Before hackers and the security risk they bring, there would have been no need to hire someone to check how secure you are. But as technology advanced and so much information started to be stored on computers and in cloud storages, hacking become much more dangerous to these companies. It was also a big risk for the author to allow for a hacker to try to get into his computer and do the most damage as possible.

    I also thought it was interesting how they also found that the hacking doesn’t necessarily have to be done through a computer using coding. It can be done through something so simple as finding a home address from an image and being able to change someone’s phone password and completely control their account to the point where they can’t do anything about it. And it doesn’t take very much knowledge of computers to be able to do this. All it takes is a small piece of information and the hacker can do a lot of damage.

    Ultimately, this proved to me how serious of a threat hacking is and how much more research I need to do and how careful I need to be. Like I said earlier, I don’t know a lot about hacking, but I now enough to not get caught on easy things such as phishing. I didn’t have a post-it note on my laptop before reading this but now I have put one on thinking about how creepy it is that a hacker could literally be watching my every move so easily. I also need to read more articles or listen to more podcasts on how to protect my computer from outside hacking attempts and ensure that my personal information stays safe. As technology advances, this is only going to become a bigger issue and hackers are going to continue to get better at hacking so I might as well take my precautions earlier before it is too late. It is better to build the boat before the storm comes.

  29. Burak Eraslan April 22, 2016 at 6:11 pm #

    Technology is growing at a rapid rate, and nobody knows where it is all going. The rate of growth is not slowing down anytime soon, and on top of this, neither is the amount of people out to do bad in the world. With the amount of technology that is evolving within this country, we are seeing a spike in new ways to do harm to people all over America. This article talks about one problem, and a solution to that problem, which is something that many do not take seriously at all. The reason for this is because people do not see the potential harm that can come from all of this in the long run. I think that the privacy issue has been around since the beginning of technology, and as time passes there are more and more ways to track, and watch people from the devices that we call our own. I know that this laptop that I am currently working on can easily be tracked, hacked, and taken control over. However, I personally am not someone who goes through the necessary steps to get rid of the potential threats. I personally do not have tape over my camera which would disable the chance of someone seeing me through the lens. I also do not have a broken mic plugged into my mic jack to ensure that my voice or conversations cannot be heard. I think that this is a fair statement to say that manly people are like this. Although there are many advancements in technology, and that each one enables us to become much more efficient, and productive, we need to understand that this also now allows us to be more susceptible to fraud, deceit, and attack from people.

  30. Alex Chrisman April 22, 2016 at 8:07 pm #

    The age of computers has done a wonderful thing for man. It has allowed us to do many things that we could not do otherwise, such as finding endless amounts of information and the ability to see friends from thousands of miles away. However, with this new power has come a new danger. That hackers, if they have the talent, can hack into almost any one of our systems and do as they please with it. This gives them the ability to access personal data, information about our banking, and much more. One of the biggest problems that consumers can face is that hackers have the ability to gain access to our webcams. This is a major privacy problem that we all face. While it is possible to deny hackers access it is very difficult for the average consumer to do. As said in the article one of the best ways to prevent this problem for consumers to simply cover up your webcam with a camera.
    This problem of hacking goes way beyond our personal computers. A few years back Target, one of the largest store chains in America, was hacked. This gave the hackers millions of people’s credit card information. Before this hack took place Target had installed a security system that would alert officials of any hacks that were taking place. Target got the warning from their security system but didn’t do anything about it. As a result Target faced one of the most expensive hacks in history on top of the several lawsuits that they faced.
    Sony’s PlayStation faced a similar instance. Their system was hacked by a hacker group in South America that was notorious for hacking gaming systems like Microsoft’s Xbox. They put PlayStation out of service for over two weeks and managed to steal every single player’s credit card and other personal information. Sony would eventually recover before being attacked again by the same group a year later.
    With all the use people put on computers in today’s world it is vital that we maximize our cyber security. Hackers are one of our biggest problems because we don’t know who they are and we never really know when they are going to attack us until they do. By the time we realize we are being hacked it is already too late. Doing what we can to prevent hacking is very important to our personal and national security.

  31. Imani Broadway April 23, 2016 at 12:56 am #

    This interview is worth a listen! If the title did not catch anyone’s attention I do not know what else will. Hacking seems like it is starting to become a serious problem in the world and everybody being so dependent on technology does not help. Having someone hack your phone or computer can cause serious problems within your life depending on what information they obtain. Kevin Ross explains his journey of being hacked with his interview on Note To Self.
    Kevin Ross is a well-known tech journalist and a news director for Fusion. He starts off talking about how big companies will hire professional hackers to come in for months and try to hack their system. This method is called penetration test or just a pen test and Ross decided he wanted his own personal version of the test. He too went to some of the best hackers and they started out their hacking from the help of Facebook. One of the hackers started by blowing up a picture of Ross’s dog and that gave them his address and somehow his email address as well, after having his address they started calling around to all his services providers. They got a hold on to his cell phone company and had a women employee call posing as his wife and had a YouTube video playing in the background of a baby crying. Ross Cell Phone Company eventually gave the women all of his information. Another employee from the hackers spent two weeks hacking his computer. The man created a fake website and sent an email out to Ross asking him to run an installer, which then lead to a bunch of fake pop ups asking for his credentials and sadly he entered his information. This gave the man complete access to Ross’s computer, and within minutes he had just about everything about Ross to the point where he could pose as him if he wanted too. He later installed something on Ross’s computer that made his webcam take a picture of him every two minutes and then send it to the hackers email. He was also able to hack the camera he had installed on the outside of his house, so if he wanted to he would know whenever he left his house and could rob Ross of his possessions. Hackers can get in just about any and everything now-a-days, our dish washer, cars, and fridges all come equipped with little computers that can be hacked. Ross also gave an example about how a teenager hacked a CIA director all by posing as a Verizon employee, having been a CIA agent I feel as though he should have known better but that also shows how it can happen to just about anyone. Luckily he ends his interview sharing that although everyone can be a target there is slim chance of you been hacked unless someone has something out against you.
    I enjoyed listening to this interview because it was interesting hearing the plans in which they used to hack Ross. I have seen laptops around school that have a posted note or a sticker of some sort covering up their webcams. The thought of someone maybe potentially spying on me never really crossed my mind. At times I might look at my webcam and thought about how crazy it would be if someone could see me, because I am sure I’m not the only one who has done some weird or embarrassing things in front of their computer. After this interview I now have a sticker covering my webcam and I am more aware of what I download and websites I give my information too. I have already dealt with a fraud incident once before and would hate to have to experience it again.

  32. Moe Jaman April 29, 2016 at 5:30 pm #

    This article covers a matter and a video that I watched just a week or two prior to reading this now. They topic not only sounded familiar, but so did the quotes and the names. The video and article are truly eye opening as it shows the power for a hacker and the dangerous of unknowingly surfing and click around the web. In this story, the writer discusses how celebrities and companies are constantly being hacked into and invaded for their information and data. Sometimes hackers are even so successful that a company needs to fight back on the cyber field and the security breach makes headlines on papers. These companies can range from small private businesses to a corporation as large as Coca Cola.
    In this article and experiment we see the writer, Kevin Roose, make his way to the largest hacker convention in the year, Def Con, where he not only learns about hacking and all the different ways to gather other’s information but also sets up hackers to hack him, just to show the possibility of it happening.
    First Kevin meets with Jessica Clark, a social engineer hacker, who uses phone phishing to gather information from Kevin’s cell phone company. This was done fairly simply with no actually hacking involved as she made a phone call to customer support impersonation Kevin’s wife who is in distress and a rush with a crying newborn baby in the back. This baby was artificially created my simply using a crying baby video from YouTube and the phishing was successful thanks to Jessica’s evident experience and impressive acting skills. Jessica not only got Kevin’s email, she added herself to the account as well as blocked Kevin out of his own account. This is simple phishing that can be avoided with the proper training of the customer support staff on the phones. This representative actually has no right to disclose Kevin’s information to anyone not listed under his account, regardless of their relationship to them. By falling under the persuasion of the hacker/phisher, this representative not only cooperated with an unlisted person on the account and disclosed information, they added the unlisted person to Kevin’s account without authorization from the account holder, as well a password without asking the account holder.
    Kevin also asked a professional hacker, Dan Tetler, to hack his personal computer and see how much information he could extrapolate without Kevin knowing there was even a serious situation occurring. By the end, it turns out that Dan had managed to gain access to Kevin’s emails, credentials, personal and work information, bank accounts, social media, AmEx account, and even social security number. Dan set this bug up to infiltrate Dan’s computer by simply creating a fake Squarespace account verification link in which Kevin thought nothing of. Although, as soon as Kevin clicked that link and downloaded the “Squarespace” update, his life was doomed to be down the drain. Dan even set up Kevin’s camera to monitor him and his travel, sending Dan updates on what Kevin was doing, and where he was.
    Not only is this advanced type of hacking highly dangerous, it seems almost unnoticeable, making it even more harmful and powerful. Companies like squarespace need to take the proper measures to ensure that individuals cannot use their company face/domain names for impersonation as well as provide verification and identifiable tells that links that individuals open are officially from the verified company.
    Putting a post it over your camera is one simple way to prevent stalkers and hackers from having eyes on you but when it comes to professionals and faking large company links, there just isn’t much the individual can do. That is the most dangerous part.

  33. Kate Worthy April 30, 2016 at 1:37 pm #

    Making sure I am technologically secure is not something that I have ever really been worried about. I think about it every once and a while and say to myself maybe I should add a password or put a sticky not over my laptop camera but I generally forget about it a few seconds late and then sticky note never makes in on my computer. Note to Self’s episode titled “Why Should You Put a Post-It Over Your Laptop Camera” makes me think for more than just a second about just how secure I am technologically.
    The post discusses how major companies like Coca Cola hire some of the best hackers out there to try to break through there security systems and find all the flaws in their system so that the companies can fix this errors. This concept struck curiosity in the author of this article. The author wanted to do this on a personal level and see just how vulnerable they were. The quote that the hacker had after preforming this little experiment was “I could have made you homeless. I could have made you penniless.” That to me was eye opening.
    While this experiment shows that each and everyone of us needs to take more extreme measures to protect ourselves against scammers and hackers like this, there is still one problem. This problem is the reason my laptop camera is Post-Itless. This problem is the thought “why would someone want or choose to hack me?”
    I feel that there is no reason that anyone would choice to target me. It’s not like I am some millionaire or have anything crazy confidential on my computer right? I’m sure all those people who woke up one morning with an empty bank account, maxed out credit cards, flights booked to Hawaii in their names all thought the same thing until that terrifying morning.
    My mom always says to me “you never think that one text is going make you crash” or “no one wakes up thinking they’ll be the one to get drugged at a party” and I always brush these comments off. The fact of the matter is that she could not be more right, like moms usually are. You never think it’s going to be you until after it happens and even then you can still be in disbelief.
    There is no way to protect yourself from all of the danger and creeps of the world, but there are precautions you can take to make yourself just a little bit safer. The problem still remains though, are people, myself included, ever going to take those extra precautions before something bad happens to them. The sad reality is even after reading this pot and writing this paper I probably won’t change any of my habits or add that extra layer of security to my computer. I am one of those people who have to learn from experience and actually make the mistake before I change my ways unfortunately. Hopefully someone or something can knock some sense into me before I wake up with an empty bank account, maxed out credit cards, flights booked to Hawaii in my name.

  34. Anastasiya Yurovskaya May 18, 2016 at 2:24 pm #

    This was an interesting article/podcast because it really gets you thinking about the realities of being hacked. Everyone is aware that hackers exist and that they could be anywhere at anytime but nobody really likes to think, “that might be me getting hacked”. We are constantly reading articles, like the one they mentioned about the teenager hacking into the Director of the CIA’s e-mail, or watching news stories about it, but again, we are not wondering if that’s us, we are instead going “that’ll never be me, who would want to hack into my accounts?”. Well the answer is simple, anyone at any point could hack into anything that we own. Our e-mail accounts, phone, cable, bank accounts, anything is accessible with enough time and motivation. Maybe you were at a coffee shop and mentioned that you just came into a significant amount of money and someone behind you overheard. Now, this person is plotting to get into your bank account and make your money theirs.
    In the world that we live in now, where we are so technologically advanced, we must look for ways to protect ourselves against potential hackers. As they mentioned in the podcast, you can download something on your computer called little snitch, which is a program that controls what you share and connect to and if your content is being downloaded somewhere off your computer. Anther thing they mentioned was calling your phone or cable companies and letting them know not to give out your information to anyone unless they know a specific code or unless you personally call and let them know that a certain person is allowed to access the information on your account. I think this is a very smart thing to do because you never know you might call asking for your information. In the podcast, they spoke about a woman who had called the phone company for information posing as a wife with a crying baby in the background to gain sympathy from the employee in order to attain what she had wanted. What was interesting to me is that she actually thought of going on Youtube and looking up crying baby noises to manipulate and gain sympathy from the worker. People nowadays don’t even have to physically go and hack into your account, with something called social engineering, which involves zero coding, someone could manipulate an employee of a company to access an individual’s personal information.
    It’s funny that they spoke about putting a sticky note over your laptop/computer camera because I have been doing that for years. Every since I got a computer with a built-on camera in High School, I’ve kept a sticky note over it whenever I have not used it. I think this is one simple way to protect yourself against hackers because you never know who could be hacked into your camera taking personal pictures or videos of you. I was sitting in class this past semester and as I looked around at everyone’s laptops, I noticed that almost every single person had either some little piece of paper or sticky not over their camera. It’s interesting to me that so many people have now caught on to the fact that it might be safer to do this because looking back to maybe 10-15 years ago we didn’t have to take these precautions. Nowadays however it is extremely important to know how to protect yourself against potential hackers and I think that everyone should be educated on how to shield yourself from a possible incident.

  35. Sabrina Julien May 21, 2016 at 5:17 pm #

    This spring semester, I had two students sit in front of me who had post-it stickers covering their laptop cameras, and I never understood why util reading this article. I just assumed that they were really paranoid. Halfway through listening to this article, I got up to get a post-it to cover my laptop’s camera. The advances in technology never ceases to amaze me. We all know that hackers do exist, so why not protect ourselves ? We all think that we will not be the one to be hacked, but anyone can be a target. If you think that you can’t be hacked and you have no reason to find ways to protect yourself from hackers, your the easiest target. I mean who would of thought Kevin Roose would had paid a price for just post a picture up of his dog. Someone went out there way to blow up the picture to get his address on the dog’s collar. Hackers will go above and beyond to get any information they want. No one is safe. I found it interesting how companies like Coca Cola will actually hire hackers to hack them, to test their systems. I think that a great idea and all companies should do that. Companies shouldn’t wait to be hacked, in order to find out what there weak areas are.
    I have actually got my information hacked before. I had only been 21 for couple of months and I received a credit card bill for over $1000 worth of items, I did not purchase. After your information has been stolen, sometimes its not easy getting it back. Undoing the damage can be time consuming and frustrating. Once you finally find the source, you have to cancel accounts, create new accounts, change passwords, and change/create a pin numbers. Then your bank or a company will start an investigation to make sure your allegations, of be been hacked and someone stealing you identify is true. After all, just proved to them that anyone can say that their someone their not.
    Its really sad cause even with an articles like this and horror stories from friends/family, some people will continue to overlook this and think that it could never be them. There are things we can do to protect ourselves. We can change our passwords every 6 months, create strong and hard to guess passwords, create pin numbers, and simply putting a post-it sticker over out laptop camera/ webcam. Yes, hackers are very talented and may be able get pass all this, but at least we will have the piece of mind that we didn’t make it easy for them to do so.

  36. Andrew Thomas Vastardis May 24, 2016 at 4:00 pm #

    You think having to put a post it note over your PC camera is a crazy thing until you read this article. For me, I’ve read and heard about the ability to hack into a camera such as this before so this is of little surprise to me. Also, I’ve had a few friends, seen strangers, and even seen my significant other put a post it note on their computer due to this fact. Me personally, I have thought of doing so, but I usually just turn the camera off and if they do somehow hack in and see me I can only hope they enjoy what they see.
    In all seriousness it is crazy after listening in to the live stream how easy it is to hack into someone’s computer. Kevin Russ who sacrificed himself to being hacked by this one hacker clicked on a popup that the hacker sent and essentially the hacker was then able to send fake computer alerts, trick Kevin into giving certain essential info and the hacker was fully able to take full control of the computer. He had access to his webcam, photo’s, bank accounts, programs, etc. It is crazy how simple and easy it is to ruin someone’s life through the use of hacking. It also gets you to think about being more cautious yourself. Their end conclusion in the steam was that there is little you can do to protect yourself, and that to me is not only crazy but horrifying.

  37. Adam Levi May 28, 2016 at 9:07 pm #

    Protection of privacy should be an increasing concern among all technology users. I see many people who keep a sticker or post-it note over their webcam and I used to think that people were just being paranoid and over-reacting. I have personal experience with webcam privacy invasion. One day while doing homework on my laptop, I noticed that the small light next to the camera was on. While I did not see someone else appear on my screen, I knew that this light meant that my webcam had turned on, and without my intention. I saw myself on the screen and received a message of what the intruder had intended to look like an official government message. While this was not as personally violating as some other similar incidents it is still an illegal invasion of privacy. I think for someone like Kevin Roose subjecting himself to the “pen” test is commendable because he is attempting to test and better understand the risks and ease with which someone can hack and violate another’s personal privacy rights. Just from a picture of his dog, the hacker was able to ascertain his home address. This is especially scary because not only has his privacy been violated, but the hacker could use this information to further intrude on his life. It is not uncommon to get hacked in a day and age where technology is a significant part of many personal as well as professional lives.
    It is difficult to come up with ways to protect oneself from cybernetic attacks and that is what is scary about this evolution of new technologies. It is important to think about invasion of privacy before it happens so cyber security software can prevent it in the first place. People never think that it can happen to them until it is too late and they are being spied on or involved in scams like identity theft. Kevin Roose mentions something in the podcast called the little snitch which is a security software that may be a bit costly however worth the expense. Many people value personal security very highly and the little snitch software will allow people to keep a peace of mind and feel protected. Every laptop these days has a webcam and doing something simple like putting a sticker or post it can protect someone’s personal privacy very easily.

  38. Joe Murdaco September 21, 2016 at 1:33 pm #

    With this new world we live in where technology is taking over our lives, we are faced with serious problems. Firstly, privacy has been a major concern in the industry ever since humans invented the webcam. I have always heard that I should cover my camera on my laptop in case someone was able to hack in and watch my every movement. I never believed this tall tale but now I am starting to regret not covering my camera. I even heard that people can turn on my camera even with my computer turned off. This is astonishing because I was always ensured that I was safe in my house from predators and that no one would hack into my computer with all of the privacy software I downloaded. After reading this article, I am very worried about my privacy. Most importantly, the company that was hacked in this article was Coca-Cola, one of the biggest companies in the country. It is very frightening that a well-known company like Coke can have their systems penetrated because it shows how easy it must be for any individual to get hacked.
    The information found on any given computer can be vital to the owner. Losing the data on the computer can ruin an individual’s life or a company’s reputation. There should be legislation or a new technology that protects citizens of their personal data. The fact that the government can watch every single movement we make is not fair and it should be changed. The government is able to hack into any cell phone at any given time for their needs. I am not sure how that is fair for users of technology and it does not seem responsible. It makes me not want to use my computer or phone for personal reasons anymore. It is not that I am hiding anything or do not want people to see what is on my computer but the fact that there is nothing I can really do about it bothers me. It should bother everyone that uses some source of technology. There may be a few things to fix this problem but it starts with the government and its regulation of itself.
    Firstly, our technology needs to be set up where the government and federal agencies cannot penetrate the system and get whatever information they need. I’m sure our phones and computers are made primarily for the government to keep track of our every move but it should not be that way. Microsoft is in a dispute with the government now over a privacy issue where the government was taking data from different customers of Microsoft. The government likes to take information they need to benefit themselves and get away with it and I am excited to see a big company stand up to them.
    The co-founder of Carbon Dynamics says that “I could have made you homeless…I am you” when talking to a journalist. He says that he can pay people with someone’s money by hacking into their systems. It is ridiculous that someone has the ability to do this to people and the government has to do something about this. I will definitely change my passwords and make them more difficult to figure out what they are.

  39. Kaitlyn McCluskey September 22, 2016 at 7:08 pm #

    This podcast really gives people a taste of how crazy advanced technology hackers are these days. Kevin Roose, did a little experimenting to see how much damage he could do if he tried to hack someone’s computer. They say that there is two ways that hackers hack into people’s computers. Those two ways include the “conventional way” (the code written to get inside a computer) and “conning” people. Corporations hire hackers to try as hard as they can to hack into their systems and get any information that they can so that the company can fix any holes to prevent this from actually happening. Roose said he wanted to see if he could do this on a more personal level, to himself. Roose said that he put up a normal picture of his dog and “hackers” actually took the photo and zoomed in to be able to see his home address on his dog’s collar tag. Once they got this information, they called Roose’s service providers and one of the “hackers” posed as his wife to get all of his account information. It was actually very easy for the woman to do, as she just pretended to have a crying baby in the background to almost guilt the customer service representative into granting her requests.
    Roose’s “hackers” said that they were able to get into his computer through various emails and pop ups and then proceed to download software and such onto his computer. The “hacker” also said that he has been watching him through his webcam for two days…that is some scary stuff. He was also able to get ahold of footage from his security camera that he had outside of his home. Hackers can literally take control of a person’s life without them ever even realizing.
    Roose says that there are some precautions that people can take in order to try to avoid being hacked. Some of those ways are setting passcodes or telling your service providers not to give their account information to anyone unless they have a certain pin or something along those lines. He also admitted to having a post-it note covering his computer camera to be extra safe. There is also a program that you can download to your computer that lets you know when your computer is trying to make a connection to another computer. He says that hackers usually have motive to hacking people, so that does make me feel a little better but people get hacked all the time and if you don’t take the right precautions then you really can’t do anything about it until it’s too late.
    I won’t lie, there have been a couple of times where my laptop has been open and I get nervous that someone, somehow is watching me through my webcam. I personally think it is beyond scary how hackers can get into your computer without you even knowing. I honestly did not know it was possible for a hacker to have all of your information off your computer without actually having to ever physically touch your computer. If people who are not exactly technologically advanced are using a computer regularly, they might not know what is safe and what is not. This probably makes it so easy for hackers to take advantage of their information. I am sure one day, hackers are going to be able to hack into people’s cell phones which make things even scarier because I feel like cell phones are most people’s most personal item. Even though having technology advancements are exciting, society needs to be extremely careful about their usage and protection.

  40. Jason Salazar September 23, 2016 at 11:10 am #

    Technology has been able to run our lives in the world today. We can actually end up in problems if your information of someone gets into the wrong hands. That is exactly how hackers these days use the internet to hack and take all the information they want from you. The name of the article grabbed my attention from the start. I have been told by many people to cover up my laptop camera because it is unsafe. I never really cared, thinking I had nothing to be scared of. My father actually covers up his webcam and is very concern with the hacking going on in today’s world. His friend was hacked online, they got him to but his information in a website and they ended up taking a lot from him. Now that I do my own personal things such as have my own bank account or do my own purchases online, I try my best to stay away from the fishing emails. In the article, Kevin Roose hires hackers to see how easily they can hack him or show they ways people hack.
    Roose knows that firms hire hackers to try their best to get any information out of the firm and report to them what they found. He thought it would be a smart idea if he did the same with a person instead of a firm. The first example they used was social engineering. Social engineering is when someone has some type of information and just uses that to call up a company to get more information about them or get access to the password. The people he hired used the information of where he lives from a picture of his dog. The hackers saw the collar had the address on it and used that to get other information on it. They called up a company and said the person talking was the wife of Kevin Roose. In the background they used a youtube video of a baby crying. This hacked had to be emotionally intelligent in order to make the people from the company give up the information. This does not require a lot of skill, with a simple information you can easily get access to someone’s account. The other form of hacking that they did was from the internet. The hacker set up a fake website and sent him a fishing email, that Roose opened and asked him to put his credentials in. That gave the hacker access to his passwords, bank account, his AmEx, and social security. Not only did he let that happen but the hacker had access to his computer so he downloaded a program that took pictures of him every two minutes from the webcam. Roose could have easily had everything taken away from him. The hacker could have basically used everything he has against him. One program they talked about called little snitch. This program notifies you when your computer is making access with other computers, so you know someone is trying to hack you. One thing I never do is go on these fishing emails. I make sure I ignore or send them all to junk. I know that is a big way that hackers get your information and I don’t allow it. It is all scary things that can happen if someone really wants to hack you. This article made me realize it does not take much for anyone to be able to do this. It will mostly take time but if the person does have enough time and wants to do you harm, they can.

  41. Jesse Klarfeld September 23, 2016 at 12:27 pm #

    Technology has become a huge advancement in the 21st century and definitely has had a major impact on the lives of all different kinds of people. Although the web, social media, and many more daily technological activities may be fun and informative, there are many safety precautions that should be taking place. This is because not everyone using computers, phones, and other stuff in that nature have good or general intentions. Kevin Roose, a tech journalist and creator of the podcast “Note to Self”, enlightens us on the behind the scenes scary actions that are taking place. This includes hackers and how they can take advantage all different ways in order to get information leading to multiple benefits for them.

    Roose makes it clear to the audience that hacking is no joke and can take place anywhere and to anyone. This is a very important issue that he is addressing because this can cause significant damage to a company or individual. This podcast related to a recent data breach that occurred to Yahoo. Unfortunately, this week hundreds of millions of yahoo accounts have been hacked. This is very scary for those individuals in which it affects because certain information such as personal addresses and credit card information can be at use of the hackers.

    What I found interesting about this podcast is that it also has a point of view of “good hackers”. Roose gives us knowledge on how companies such as Coca Cola will actually hire hackers in order for them to tighten up their security. In these cases, hackers are used to attempt breaches for the benefit of the company. This allows the company to fix the weaknesses that allow the hacker to enter in the first place. What was even crazier in this podcast was that Roose wanted to be put through a “penetration test”, or a “pen test”, himself in order to actually see the first hand threats.

    Throughout high school and even now college, I have always seen some people cover their laptop cameras with a post-it note and I always thought that they were paranoid. Now looking back, I consider it a smart concept because of the advanced hackers in the world today. I find it very scary, but also interesting that individuals could get a lot of information and access to another person’s device without even needing to physically steal it. I personally think this is a very unethical thing to do, but there are just straight up unethical people in this world. However, the possibility of this occurring interests me because it requires much technical knowledge and tedious actions.

    A personal aspect that I have had in my life is through Xbox. I have had experience of people on Xbox Live multiplayer hacking other accounts because of confrontations that take place in Call of Duty matches and other games that are very competitive. Many times while waiting for a game to start up, I would hear kids arguing and threating other people that they would hack their account. This often was a bluff in order to scare that one individual, but there have been many cases where it was not just a bluff. I’ve actually had friends who got their account hacked, but luckily through Microsoft they were able to get access again. Another first hand point of view that I have seen is my friends’ Facebook accounts being hacked. Some of my friends, including one of my best friends, have had their account hacked and send certain spam requests and status changes. This was bad because other users would not know unless that person made everywhere aware to stay away from that certain account. Ultimately, the one friend I am talking about had to make a new account because the hacker changed the password and took full control. Overall, there was no dangerous and damaging impact of this account hack because there was no vital information on his Facebook, however many people do have important stuff and that is why this is a potential danger.

    As a tech person myself, I have always been aware of hackers and safety of such devices. However, I learned a lot from Roose in terms of the ways in which hackers go about their tasks and the ways in which we can prevent them. Nowadays, it is very hard to make anything “unhackable”. You would think that the government and other huge instances like that would have a system that is very secure. If only this thought was true. There are some Einstein’s in the field of hacking, and that is why there have been many breaches in governmental systems, whether it was another country hacking or just an individual hacking.

    This podcast goes way beyond what the title portrays and I appreciate that. I think what Roose is doing is a great thing because it brings awareness to the unpredictable and invisible “enemies” out there. I learned a lot while listening to him and I think everyone including children that are starting up in this technological word should be taught the dangers of pursuing such activities. Hacking should not be something that is looked down upon because it can happen at anytime, anywhere, and to anyone. This acknowledgement of this danger is one of the first steps to preventing this from happening to you!

  42. Tyler Hands September 23, 2016 at 8:52 pm #

    You never think about the general welfare of your privacy until you hear about someone’s experience with a breach of their security. Every time you need to type in a password to a new social media account or cable provider it can be aggravating and eventually passwords become duplicates of other passwords. Convenient, easy to remember and saves tons of time trying to figure out one of three passwords you use instead of a different password for each and every account you own. But how much more is your security at risk when you do this? If, for example, the password for someones Facebook account was the the same as their account for their Chipotle reqards account and someone was able to get into their Facebook because they acquired the password through the Chipotle account, they now have access to plenty of information to help them in recovery of other account information. Your date of birth, email for the account which may be an email used in other accounts, on and on until they have anything and everything they need to know about you to essentially be you on pen and paper. So that extra five minutes to think of a new password doesn’t seem so aggravating as having all of your personal information stolen now does it?
    But even if there isn’t a top tier hacker trying to get into an account from their computer there are other ways to get information. As the article points out there are plenty of societal tricks to getting information. How hard is it to trick someone on the other side of a help line into believing you are someone else? The example they play in the audio tape is that of someone calling a help line to get a pin number for someone they claim to have a relationship to. In the audio clip they have a youtube video playing in the background of the phone call that sounds like a baby crying. For someone who does not personally know the account owner they can easily think that the person on the other line must be who they claim to be. The baby crying also gives the help line assistant a sense of urgency, to give the information to the person requesting it so they may be able to get back to the problem at hand, the “crying baby”. Playing on someone’s emotions can give someone else just the smallest amount of information but none the less that information in the right hands can lead to devastating results to the actual owner of the account. It really becomes clear how easy a hacker can ruin a life when the audio clip from the article explains how the hacker was able to take pictures every two minutes of the person he was hacking. Your entire day, every action, caught on camera. What’s stopping them from doing that to a phone or any other device with a camera and the internet.
    With everything being connected to the internet threats in the online world are just as real of a threat as a mugger in a dark ally. People are programmed to be wary of their surrounding when uncomfortable or nervous. At night, in an unfamiliar area a person might feel more of an obligation to glance over their shoulder or prepare for the worse just in case something goes wrong. However, people should be just as cautious when sitting in a cafe connecting to the nearest free wifi. It’s “safer” than the back ally at night some would think, but the unfortunate reality is that while your life is fully connected to the online world it may never be safe unless you are as aware as ever.

  43. Margaret Klich September 26, 2016 at 2:31 pm #

    The problem with always being online is the idea of always being online. For the last decade, there have been articles about hackers going into your computer and collecting all of an individual’s personal information. For instance, in high school (6 years ago) I received a laptop from school with a webcam, where it was normal for students to have a sticker covering their camera. The reason was because many students believed that it was possible to hack into the computer and turn your camera on. 6 years later, it is not surprising to know that this can still be news. Technology has changed over the years, and so have the ways hackers conduct their hacking schemes.

    To make a point from another post that I did last week, if hackers can hack your computer and turn your webcam on, they can also hack into your phone and turn your camera/microphone on. And instead of sending “fishing” emails like they discussed in this recording, they make an application on the app or play store. When you click “install”, a window will pop up showing you all the permissions you will give this application, with many of them being “the ability to turn your microphone and camera on.”

    Being educated on how to protect yourself with the emerging scandals is most important and individuals need to be choosy of what they do on their computers and laptops. There are many different avenues hackers can take. The first that many people don’t care much about it your cell phone number or name. To some, this isn’t a big deal. But think for a minute that this person/company that has this information will sell it to a third party and they will call you every day and spam your phone (texting and calling) for either donations, or pretending to be someone else. I received a phone call from a number I did not know (which I will never answer and if it’s important or legitimist, someone will leave a voicemail) and they did in fact leave a voicemail. The voicemail was a so-called “debt collector” trying to work out a negotiation with me on a bill I did not pay that went into collections. If I would have answered this phone call, I would have been terrified I forgot to pay a bill, gave them all of my information, and probably my money to pay them off. However, I keep track meticulously of my credit score and all of my bills because I am looking into purchasing a house in the next couple of years, and so I knew right away that this was in fact a spam caller. Not only do they hack through phone calls and computers, but even social media. Just last week, I received a Facebook friend request of from my mom- with her picture that I was familiar with. Assuming she accidently unfriended me, I quickly accepted her friend request. As soon as I did, I noticed her only friend was me. I quickly called her and asked why she sent me a request. It was then that we realized someone was pretending to be my mom and sent all of her friends (that showed it publicly on her profile) a request. The more people that accepted this fake-person friend request, their information was compromised (including myself). Many individuals have their phone number, name, friends list, email address, birth day, and any other information they choose to display to their friends. Luckily for me, I hide all of these classified details and was not affected from the situation. Many of my mom’s friends, however, were affected by this and started receiving texts saying they were my mom and that she got a new number.

    There are so many different types of ways hackers can get your personal information. With the digital era being so exciting and opens that doors to education material and having access the anything at one’s finger tips, there are many areas that we need to protect to ensure we are being safe about what we click on, download, or even the people we add on social media. Make a fake name, or one that your last name looks like but is a letter off. Don’t use your official date of birth, or use a different year. Be choosy who or what you give your personal information to. Do research on what companies do with your information and if they sell it to third parties, or use it for marketing purposes. All of these actions will protect yourself from being hacked and will assist you in the future “Big Data” where we don’t know what will come about by all of it.

  44. Sami C September 26, 2016 at 11:02 pm #

    Is hacking good or bad? There are pros and cons to having the ability to hack. The American government can hack into potential terrorists’ devices and see what they are up to or where they are located. Businesses bring in professional hackers to test how secure their company are to outside threats. This is a smart idea because the company wants to make sure their secrets stay their secrets and have a strong enough protection system in place to prevent hackers from entering. These show how hacking can be a positive thing. However, what about when it happens to the average citizen? After listening to this article, I realized that barely knew anything about hacking and I need to start to take additive processions.

    I was really thrown off from the get go about how easy it is for people to hack. I always thought about hacking as a code that gets into your computer to find out about your information. However, one of the commentators talked about how his dog’s nametag was blown up by a hacker. The hacker found out the person’s home address and was able to gather information from there. They called the phone company posing as his wife with a sound effect of a crying baby in the background. The crazy thing to me was that the phone company gave the woman his account information just like that. There were no security percussions or anything to check her identity and relation to him. It was as simple as that to be able to loosing all that information to a stranger. This really made me think about what kind of pictures I have posted and how hackers could use that information to their advantage. I looked through my Facebook pictures and the information I gathered on myself is where I go to college, what some of my interests are, whom I hang out with. I do have a privacy setting where no one can see this information besides people I am friends with. Same thing goes with my Instagram account and other accounts I have. I give people as little information as I can to protect myself. However, I am sure a hacker could get through it somehow, especially with the technology advances now a day.

    The commentators moved onto talking about how it is possible to hack into someone’s computer and use the camera built in to take pictures then send them to the hacker. This is very disturbing to me because it could be going on right now and I have no idea. Hackers can use these pictures to “make you homeless and penniless”. Now, I really don’t think I am going to go as far as putting a post-it note over my laptop. It does make me wonder if a hacker can take pictures through our IPhones. I am thinking about getting the app called Little Snitch that notifies me if my laptop is trying to connect to another one because that seems more realistic to me than someone hacking into my laptop camera. It is very rare that someone will actually want or feel the need to do that. The big take away I have gotten from listening to this topic was that I just need to be careful when it comes to my information and protect it as much as I can. To comment off of Margaret’s post, I do the same thing when it comes to phone numbers that I do not have saved in my contact book. I do not answer them. If the person is real and legitimate, they will leave a voicemail. In the past year, there has been a few unknown numbers that have called me and I have not answered. None of them left a voicemail, so I did not feel the need to reply. However, if someone really wanted to hack me there is a very small chance that I would be able to stop him or her. My mom got her identity stolen and she is one of the most careful people I know when it comes to keeping her information to herself. She always checks her credit score, has privacy settings, etc. Yet, after all of this precaution, she still managed to get her identity stolen. I want to end this comment of this article with a website to share with all of you on a few tips to follow that will help keep privacy and help prevent getting hacked (http://digg.com/2016/how-to-not-get-hacked).

  45. Valerie Natter September 28, 2016 at 9:01 pm #

    This article really shed some light on the world of hacking for me. Although I knew that cyber safety was an issue, this opened my eyes more than I though it would. Now that I know a hacker can easily put software onto your computer that can take a picture of you every two minutes, I will be putting a post it note on my camera and recommending the same to my friends and family. It really creeps me out that even in my own home I have to worry about a hacker or predator watching me. There really is no safe place these days.
    Even though most people think most hacking occurs in big corporations and in the government, many hackers do target normal people. It is very easy for an experienced hacker to get into someone’s personal computer and get all of their information. When the hacker said that he could leave the person that he hacked homeless and penniless it really made me cringe. It’s scary that a lot of people have their whole life saved on their computer and at the touch of a button someone can destroy it all.

  46. Edward Vestergaard September 30, 2016 at 6:37 pm #

    It’s hard to imagine life predating modern technology, but said life was without the cyber threats which plagues current society. Back then, transactions and finances were conducted in person at a physical location, such as a bank or department store. Now, with convenience in mind, goods and services are effortlessly bought and sold via the internet. Coupled with the recent launch of mobile banking, in which money can be deposited, withdrawn, or transferred within seconds, consumerism has never been higher. However, although a streamlined transaction process has its advantages, conversely it has its disadvantages too. Since currency cannot be used to make online purchases, a (valid) credit or debit card is commonly used instead. This information therefore entitles a businesses to the specific amount in exchange for the good/service, as money is directly deducted from a checking account or charged to a bill. Despite a company’s best attempt to protect sensitive financial information, an apparent “backdoor” makes it vulnerable to thievery…aka hacking. Though I know nothing about hacking aside from simple definition- which notes the “use of a computer to gain unauthorized access to data in a system-” I have been aware of its tremendously negative impact on innocent people (Oxford Dictionaries). Posing as the typical, contemporary consumer, tech journalist Kevin Roose engaged in an experiment to answer a burning question: How easily could a life be ruined via hacking? For the best results, Roose summoned Earth’s greatest hackers to put him through a penetration test or “pen test” to find out. Seldom used outside of Fortune 500 companies, this test aims to discover system weaknesses and vulnerabilities before being exploited by ruthless opportunists. On a smaller scale however, Roose was to discover that neither he nor other commoners were any safer from hacking attempts.

    Imagine this: Unbeknownst to you, a stranger has successfully stolen your credit-card info. In a blink, hundreds of dollars’ worth of expenses are charged to your statement. Confused and frightened, you rack your brain to see if maybe, just maybe, you bought what Amex claims you bought. With absolute confidence you conclude that you didn’t purchase those items, but someone did. You reach for the phone and dial Amex’s number but stop short of calling. You are desperate to explain this obvious misunderstanding…but is it so obvious? In an ironic twist of “innocent until proven guilty,” this scenario sees you as “guilty until proven innocent” in Amex’s eyes. Although sincere, Amex has good cause to be suspicious. You could’ve spent irresponsibly despite having insufficient funds, then scrambled to cover your tracks by blaming an imaginary hacker; in which case, shame on you. However after hours of pleading, Amex finally agrees to void the charges and cancel the account. The news is liberating- for now you can rest your aching head- but the stress and anguish took its toll. Now imagine that is someone’s reality…horrifying isn’t it? Roose warns that hackers have become increasingly clever, developing sophisticated malware disguised as unsuspecting popups/downloads which, upon being clicked, grants full access to a computer’s database; thereby revealing passwords, usernames, etc. for all accounts. Conclusively, Roose says to be wary of anything specifically asking for your credentials…it’s probably a phishing attempt (sham), so watch out.

  47. Gregory Medina September 30, 2016 at 6:44 pm #

    The digital age has brought people closer together over vast distances at amazing feats. I can now communicate with my family in the Philippines over Skype as I sit on a table drinking coffee in New Jersey. Moreover, the world is so connected that news on events on one side of the globe can reach the other in a matter of minutes. The reality is that we live in the era of information where everyone has easy access to anything and everything. On the other hand, people have made their whole lives available for the world to see through social media. They become prey to people who know and take advantage of how computer systems work, also known as hackers, and take as much information about a person as they can. For businesses, to be attacked by hackers is not necessarily hard, but it is not easy either. When it comes to a digital attack towards a business hackers take advantage of the easiest thing to hack, people.

    When it comes to personal security, what the majority of people, including myself, have a password as a first line of defense. As the show Mr. Robot portrays, all the things that can easily be infiltrated just by social interaction, social media being one of them. When it comes to identifying the passwords of people, clues from social media can often be used such as street names, names of pets, birthdays, and the like. For the most case due to social media, this information is easily accessible. Overall, hacking into personal accounts are not based on how experienced a hacker may be, but on the fact that the majority of people have a poor defense to hacking.

    Moreover, when it comes to the reality of such, the majority of one’s mobile devices are most likely being hacked at the moment. For example, Windows 10 provides a multitude of “neat” features that fundamentally make it spyware. For example, it can track your position and unify your passwords along with facial recognition for logging into one’s computer. All this information is easily accessible for hackers to take and access for their own use. Hence the reason why people cover their computer cameras. Moreover, it is not like hacking is only done by one or a group of people in a room with their computers, governments also hack into the lives of their citizens and others around the worlds. Consider Edward Snowden, he exposed the reality of how much surveillance is being done on American citizens and others around the world. Overall, people can easily hack into one’s life, including the government.

    Finally, security to fight against attempts at hacking are not poor, people are just easy to hack. For example, hackers can call people claiming to be a credit card company that they have a card for and take all their information. Moreover, the software that people purchase, such as Windows 10 can provide easy access for people to hack into. There are easy ways to defend against hacking, such as covering your computer camera. Have multiple passwords that use a variety of numbers, symbols, and letters. Moreover, one should not be so gullible for social interaction, such as credit fraud callers and such. The best defense in the era of information is, fundamentally, to disconnect.

  48. Javon Diggs September 30, 2016 at 8:25 pm #

    It seems like for very benefit that comes with computer technology, there are 5 negatives to go along with it. I used to be of the opinion that people were overreacting when it came to someone’s personal items being hacked, but after reading this article and listening to the podcast, I have formed one definitive opinion: never leave personal information on the computer. The risk of my computer being hacked is real, and you never know what anybody is capable of doing. If something fell into the hands of the wrong person, a person’s entire life can be ruined forever.

    It is important to note that I am not saying people need to stop using computers. Computers have become a part of society, so much that it is hard for most people to imagine life without them. Digital technology has provided many benefits to help make life easier and more efficient for everybody. The internet is an invaluable resource that serves as an endless encyclopedia for whatever information a person needs. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are a great way to stay updated in current news and to stay in contact with distant relatives and friends. And apps serve not only provide great entertainment, but have become great tools to make everyday easier for people. So digital technology certainly has its benefits.

    However, after listening to this podcast, it is evident that the risks associated with computers make it imperative that people use cation when using this technology. All it takes is one hacker to decide that they want to invade your personal space for everything to take a downward spiral. As the article title states, a person could easily hack a laptop camera and see everything that it. And the computer’s owner will not even know. If the camera is pointing at you at the wrong time, the hacker can literally see everything. That is just the most basic risk. If the hacker is an expert, they could get into the computer’s mainframes and see all the files. If a person keeps all their personal information stored on their computer, then they could be in serious danger. The best way to avoid this is to keep information such as passwords, pictures, money, credit cards, banks, social security number, or any other type of sensitive information away from computers. Furthermore, make all internet accounts privates, and of course, keep the webcams covered. In addition, people should seriously look into the various anti-hacker programs that the companies that make these devices create. In addition, be wary of strange links, as they will often lead to corrupt sites that leave all of your personal information at risk.

    The digital age has brought many benefits, but people can no longer ignore the ugly truth: it also presents many risks. You never know what anybody is capable of, so that’s why you should never share passwords, and keep all accounts private. If people are going to use technology, the need to be prepared to defend themselves from its dangers as well.

  49. Anthony Laverde April 27, 2017 at 4:43 pm #

    Sadly, this is a very real problem, and a possibility that might happen to someone at least one time in their lives. It is not a hard thing to do, as anyone with a minute amount of technological literacy can accomplish. My brother went to the ITT Technical Institute in Long Beach, California. There, he was on track to get a degree in both Cyber Security and Software Engineering. After receiving his associate’s degree, only being in school for two years, and no where near where he had to be in order to compete with people who already had their bachelors and masters, he was already taught how to hack into someone computer and watch them through the use of a laptop or computer lens or microphone. In fact, i did not believe he could actually do so, so I made him try it and prove me wrong. To my shock and surprise, he actually did it! After my immediate feeling of amazement, I was filled with worry and doubt. Anyone could do this to me, my brother had just proven it. This is something that many people are aware of, however, like myself, there are people out there who are ignorant to the fact that it could ever happen to them and they choose to ignore it. This is a horrible idea, and we are enabling our right to privacy be robbed because we simply do not care enough to demand change, or because we do not feel like we are personally at risk, Everybody has something to hide, secrets they want to keep to themselves, and this opens the possibility of being hacked, and privacy being exposed to the rest of the world. All it takes is somebody who knows what they are doing, and like my brother proved to me that day, it really does not take a lot of advanced technological literacy to perform a task such as this one.

    If the thought that any random person might be able to hack your laptop and watch you through it, image the government doing it on a nationwide scale. This is very possible (and probably already being done is some places or countries) an absolute violation of our right to privacy. If not the government, then the laptop and smart TV companies could be doing. Nielsen could be doing it. Purchasing an apple desktop or a visio TV makes us vulnerable to be watched it these companies really wanted to do so. There would be nothing stopping them from doing this, nor would we even have a way of knowing they were doing so if it was happening. The more I think about it, this is shaping up to mirror the society described in George Orwell’s novel 1984. Here, it was mandatory that all homes had TV like devises that the people in power would use to spy on people and catch criminals to the regime. Hopefully it does not get to that point because if it ever got that bad it would probably mean the end of democracy. Until then, placing a harmless post it note over our laptop cameras seems like an easy solution to a potentially monumental problem.

  50. Carter Pichardo November 8, 2018 at 10:30 pm #

    I feel as if the more tech savvy we have become as a country the more blind people have become when it comes to digitally protecting themselves. To many such as some of my friends I constantly hear the phrases “Yeah I doubt it will happen to me though”. This sort of thinking is exactly what these hackers want you to believe! I have witnessed one of my relatives have to go through a whole dilemma of identity fraud. This is real and can happen to almost anyone if you are not always seeking ways to better protect yourself. In an article I found called “Everything is hackable — and cyber criminals can’t be tracked” by Roger A. Grimes, it summarized that essentially all internet of things is hackable. This is scary when you truly think about it. This means that if an experienced hacker really wanted to steal your sensitive information it could be possible and especially easy if you leave yourself more vulnerable. Putting a sticky note on your laptops front camera is an initial step. There are many more ways to protect your sensitive information but it just takes an effort from you to learn how to. This is why a place called YouTube exists. Don’t be the guy to only act on this after the fact like one of my relatives..


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