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Webcam in a laptop. Is it worth covering?

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Webcam in a laptop. Is it worth covering?
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Have you ever wondered if it is worth sticking the webcam in your laptop? In fact, this question is asked by a lot of people who are worried about their privacy. It turns out that the matter is not so complicated…

The webcam is an inseparable element of (almost) every modern laptop, which significantly facilitates our work – it allows you to make video calls, and in newer models it also allows you to quickly and conveniently log in to the operating system using the Windows Hello function.

On the other hand, there may be concerns in our head related to the presence of a webcam and privacy. Can someone watch us through the webcam? Is it worth sticking the webcam in the laptop? It is worth clarifying a few points here.

Manufacturers care about our safety

Unauthorized use of the webcam is a problem also noticeable by laptop manufacturers. The use of the webcam should be clearly signaled – in older models a special LED is visible, so we know when it is active (and whether no one is watching us through it).

Not only that! The operating system itself also offers special security. Very often we get notifications that a given application uses the webcam. If necessary, you can also check which apps have access to the built-in webcam. Not everyone needs to be granted such powers.

The appropriate settings in Windows 11 can be found in the menu: Get Started -> Settings -> Privacy and Security -> Camera. Next, make sure that the “Camera Access” option is enabled. The “Allow apps to access your camera” option lets you specify whether any of the apps can access your camera. Settings for a specific application can be found after activating this function.

Such security does not give everyone a sense of security, so manufacturers went a step further. In newer constructions, more and more often you can find a mechanical camera deadbolt, which gives 100% certainty that we will not be watched.

Sticking the webcam is not always a good idea

If there is no mechanical curtain in a given laptop, some people may decide to tape the webcam or stick an additional cap (you can buy it for a few – a dozen or so zlotys). Sticking the webcam is simple, fast, cheap and gives a greater sense of privacy. It is worth noting, however, that this is not always a good idea.

Some time ago, Apple warned that using camera caps could harm MacBooks. The cap can cause damage due to too little distance between the screen and the keyboard when the laptop is closed. In addition, covering the built-in camera could interfere with the light sensors and interfere with features such as automatic brightness adjustment and True Tone.

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Vernita Green

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