Webcam hacker uses "hot steam" ploy to get nude pics

Posted by Raven Lovecraft

This Apple repair tech wanted a little more than just the ability to remotely tap into women's webcams.

 

He wanted to increase his chance of seeing them naked. 20-year-old Trevor Harwell allegedly installed malware on the computers he was supposed to be fixing, which would cause them to randomly display the following bogus error message:

"You should fix your internal sensor soon. If unsure what to do, try putting your laptop near hot steam for several minutes to clean the sensor."

Harwell is reported to have been arrested, but only after his scheme actually worked, according to the local authorities.

While even the least tech-savvy person would probably be able to realize the error was bogus, all of the victims were clueless.

It took one of Harwell's customers' mother to realize how unusual the message was, as she's the one who kicked off the investigation.

According to a report in the LA Times, hundreds of thousands of pictures were taken from Harwell's PC as part of the criminal case against him.

This isn't the first time people taking their computers in somewhere to be fixed found they had been tampered with. There have been reports of people finding porn on their PC after sending it in for repairs, or of other malicious software being installed.

People bringing in their computers have also faced legal action, as companies like Geek Squad find child pornography or other illegal material during their check-up of a PC, which they turn over to authorities.

In short, be careful when you send something as personal as your computer into a third-party entity, because it's never fully safe.