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Are Facebook Apps Spying on us? – Uses The Camera in The Background

There are about a lot of allegations on facebook on data leakage and spying, All of these seems true as the new update of Whatsapp & Instagram has been detected using the camera in the background. This is a major concern concerning one’s privacy. Instagram & Whatsapp are one of the facebook subsidiaries which are in use by billions of people.

Before this people have claimed Instagram is using their microphone as all of sudden Instagram altered the advertisements listing of realtime conversations. Both Instagram & Whatsapp have can quite easily access your camera and microphone, even without your explicit permission. Not only spying but these apps also take realtime photographs without the user’s permission to detect facial features or expressions and even live to stream the camera onto the internet a lot of which has been found over the dark web’s .onions sites.

What Google tech developer Felix Krause in 2017 seems true. he explained to ShortList that

I don’t know of any apps doing it, it’s also impossible to find out if they do it. It’s a proof of concept that it is possible to abuse the APIs in the background without the user knowing. I’m not claiming that any company is doing it right now.

 Felix Krause to The ShortList

One of our team members has faced a similar problem which brought our spotlight on this major issue. In early May, Facebook detected a vulnerability which allowed commercial-grade spyware to be installed on your phone through a call using WhatsApp, which they solved in the later update, we think a similar problem has risen again thus we’re receiving these notifications.

Everyone must know when they all allow an application to use the camera and microphone what all it includes,

  1. Access both the front and the back camera
  2. Record you at any time the app is in the foreground & background
  3. Upload & Download the pictures and videos without telling you
  4. Take pictures and videos without telling you
  5. Upload the on-spot pictures/videos 
  6. Run real-time face recognition to detect facial features or expressions
  7. Live stream the camera onto the internet
  8. Detect if the user is on their phone alone, or watching together with a second person
  9. Upload random frames of the video stream to your web service and run a proper face recognition software which can find existing photos of you on the internet and create a 3d model based on your face
  10. This is the access every single app that has camera/microphone permissions can use, from Snapchat to LinkedIn to Twitter to Facebook to Instagram. For Source Click Here 

It’s Not Just Facebook Here is a list of other applications and what all they can track from your device.

  1. Facebook
  2. Twitter
  3. Instagram 
  4. Tinder
  5. LinkedIn
  6. Gmail
  7. Snapchat
  8. Whatsapp

Also, everyone should know how to protect their privacy

  • Use Camera Covers- The only safe way to protect yourself is by using camera covers, A lot available over the eCommerce sites.

Here is an example

  • Revoke camera access for all apps- This is also an effective way to safeguard your privacy. 
  • Prefer Only In-Built Camera Application to take photographs.
  • Better upload Screenshots of the original picture on the social media sites to avoid providing your locations.
  • Turn On GPS only when needed.
  • Read before giving any Permission.

What do you all think about privacy? Write it to us.

Khalid Khan

Khalid Khan is an Engineering Student with vast experience in Content Writing & Editing with numerous published articles and other writing work. He is always seeking to break new ground and share their knowledge.

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