Unfortunately for Mac users that believe their computers to be safer than one running Windows there a new piece of malware that is adding to the mounting evidence that that is no longer true. This particular program allows hackers to monitor and record video or audio using the built in camera and microphone without the user’s knowledge.
While Mac’s have a green LED to alert when the camera is in use, this new malware sits on the computer and monitors for a legitimate webcam session, like with FaceTime or Skype, then secretly records that session without the user ever knowing.
The discovery was made by Patrick Wardle, who is an ex-NSA staffer and now is in charge of research for the security intelligence firm Synack. Wardle has a knack for discovering security weakness in Apple products such as how to bypass OS X’s Gatekeeper protection and has developed tool to detect ransomware targeting Macs.
Wardle has released a free tool called OverSight, which monitors webcam and microphone activity for secondary processes gaining access and allows users to block them. Short of that, anyone concerned about being secretly recorded can do like FBI Director James Comey and Mark Zuckerberg and physically cover their webcam.