How do I know if my webcam is hacked?

find out if your pirate webcam vote
find out if your pirate webcam vote

Dernière mise à jour: 23 mai 2024

Among the advantages of laptops is the possibility of being able to have a webcam, which allows us to chat and share quickly through messaging and video software.

The problem is that like any part of your computer, this webcam can simply be hacked and you are then filmed without your knowledge, which we will admit is not really pleasant.

In this article, we will see together 4 techniques for easily detect if your webcam has been hacked. Then we will give you some tips on how to get rid of this malware simply.

Check if your webcam is hacked

The first thing we want to look at is the means of check if your webcam has been hacked if you ever have any doubts. For that, we will present three different techniques to you.

1) Check if the indicator light comes on

The first thing we advise you to do if you are ever faced with a webcam that you suspect is hacked is to check if the indicator light comes on. In fact, this light means that it is in operation.

However, if it turns on even though you haven't asked for anything, this is a potential sign that a hacker is filming you. Please note, this is not an infallible test either. In fact, it may be that the indicator light does not light up, but your camera is still filming. A program named iSeeYou lets do it all very cleanly.

2) Check your browser extensions

One of the important points is to look at when your camera turns on and if it is when you open a web page, we advise you to take a look at your extensions. Indeed, a virus could have been installed as an extension and give access to your webcam to the hacker.

So check all the extensions present and do not hesitate to uninstall any that seem suspicious to you.

To manage your extensions on Chrome:

  • First, launch your Chrome browser.
  • In the upper right corner, click More ⠇ >  More toolsExtensions.

  • Look for a suspicious extension, then click Remove. Confirm the repair by clicking on OK.

Once that's done, open your browser and check that everything is in order.

3) Search for video documents

If a hacker has secretly spied on you, you might find video recordings saved in your computer. Indeed, these are necessarily recorded somewhere.

Watch in My videos or My documents if you ever have a folder for your webcam and then check if it contains video files. If so, you must have been hacked.

However, this technique is not foolproof, as some hackers can simply live stream whatever they can see through your webcam to their devices.

4) View Webcam startup and shutdown history in Windows 10

Finally, the last technique to allow you to check if you have been hacked into your webcam is to view webcam usage history thanks to Event Viewer Windows.

Event Viewer Windows is a tool installed by default on Windows which records all sorts of things that happen on the computer. During each event, the event viewer records an entry.

The Event Viewer also records the webcam startup and shutdown history. You can use these times to find out if your webcam has been used without your knowledge.
To do this, follow these steps:

  • In the search bar Windows, start typing: Event Viewer.
  • In the section Summary of administrative events, select Information.
  • Then click on Show all instances of this event.

  • Look for a time when you suspect this has happened. You might get a clue from the references to all connected/disconnected devices.

If you find a webcam launch event that you did not perform then you have probably been hacked.

In short, to check if you are a victim of this type of hacking, you must:

  • Check if the webcam turns on by itself.
  • See if ever a suspicious browser extension has been installed.
  • Examine your folders to see if any video files of you are present.
  • Check webcam startup and shutdown in Event Viewer Windows

Get rid of the virus and avoid hacking your webcam

Now that we know for sure if there is a virus on your computer, we can move on to the next step which is getting rid of this virus. If it is an extension, you can delete it as we saw before, but if this is not the case, here is the procedure to follow.

1) Cover your webcam

The first thing to do will be to cover your webcam. Indeed, it can serve as a temporary solution, but it remains effective. If you are not using it, you might as well cover it to prevent the hacker from capturing images.

This does not exempt you from doing the second step which we will reveal to you just after, but if he sees that he does not get anything, the hacker will inevitably give up after a while and move on to another victim .

2) Start your antivirus software

The second solution that we will offer you is simply to launch antivirus software. Indeed, normally, it will detect the virus causing your spying and should in theory be able to defeat it.

In addition to your traditional antivirus, you can run specialized software called Malwarebytes which will also be able to find the virus causing this problem.

If despite your best efforts, the virus continues to be present, then you should consider doing a system restore to an earlier date when you are sure that you were not infected.

3) Avoid public Wi-Fi networks

Public WiFi hotspots are extremely vulnerable to hacking. Hackers love people on free hotspots and try to slip viruses into their devices.

If you ever need to connect to public Wi-Fi, I advise you toinstall before a VPN to secure this Wi-Fi connection.

If we summarize, here is the procedure to follow:

  • Hide your webcam.
  • Uninstall the offending extension.
  • Start an antivirus scan.
  • Do a Malwarebytes scan.
  • If the virus is still there, do a system restore.
  • Install a VPN to protect yourself on public Wi-Fi.

Now you know what to look for find out if your webcam is hacked, then take appropriate measures to protect yourself and secure your computer.