The latest version of the Rbot worm contains features that allow malicious hackers to easily turn on the webcam and microphone of infected Windows computers, effectively allowing them to spy on their victims, according to an anti-virus firm.
Rbot-GR only spreads via open network shares, rather than via mass email, so has a low propagation, according to Sophos Plc. Other Trojans allow their authors to turn on services like webcams, but the new Rbot seems specifically designed to do so.
Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos, said in a statement: If your computer is infected and you have a webcam plugged in, then everything you do in front of the computer can be seen, and everything you say can be recorded.
Of course, the foolproof solution to the general problem of having your webcam watch you unawares is to unplug it when you’re not using it. Rbot-GR also tries to steal login information for a number of online games and applications, Sophos said.