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Hacking and Online Blackmail - Are you in the nude?

Want to be blackmailed for video footage or audio files taken from your computer when you're in the nude?

We’ve all heard stories about people being spied on using their own computer, gaining access to private data and even passwords. Recently, this creepy behaviour has escalated to the point that has seen people being blackmailed for video footage unknowingly recorded from compromised webcams.

Remote Access Trojans (RATs), are downloaded programs that are installed without the victim’s knowledge. They allow a hacker to gain access and control of the compromised computer from a remote location. Whilst these tools have been around for over a decade, they're gaining popularity.

According to Chris Gatfield, the director of HackLabs, this kind of access is pretty easy to get. “It is certainly increasing; it's become a popular thing among younger hackers to do now. It's just another outlet for this type of behaviour. There's a culture around Remote Access Trojans now, so infected machines have become a tradeable commodity within the hacker subcultures." [1]

Essentially, you can log onto a forum and buy access to someone’s computer and then you could; record webcam footage and/or audio, steal passwords, download files, hide desktop icons and much more.

We operate within an increasingly complex IT environment and if the professionals are challenged by technological change and emerging new threats, you have every right to feel overwhelmed to learn of new risks too (personally and professionally).

So… will you still use your phone/tablet while on the loo? Will you canvass those classified websites, or Skype your intimate friends without ever thinking who might be watching live images of you?

One of the best measures to protect against this type of activity starts with your awareness - and having access to professional support. If you’ve been a bit naughty and want reassurance about cleaning up or preventing those unwanted intruders, speak with us. We can help!

[1] ABC Triple J’s Hack program. https://www.abc.net.au/triplej/hack/stories/s3956745.htm

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