Save Your MacBook from This Weird Weakness

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Webcams have been a part of our laptops for nearly two decades now. We wouldn't have video chat or computer selfies or a number of other functions that make communication what it is today. The little front-facing camera in your screen is so ubiquitous and so seamlessly integrated that it's easy to forget it can be a massive security risk.

Many of us have nightmares about nebulous hackers breaking into our technology to watch us as we type, watch videos, or whatever else we get up to online. It makes for a niche but booming market for small camera covers to stick onto your screen of choice. In the case of Apple laptops, however, this workaround may cause more headaches than it solves. MacRumors is reporting that pasting a small plastic nub over your embedded camera could wind up damaging or even cracking your laptop's screen.

Unfortunately, analysts think this comes down to Apple's predilection for precision engineering. Because both halves of a MacBook shell are designed to fit together so tightly, the latop has no clearance to accommodate even a tiny sliver of plastic. MacRumors says that any damage from a webcam cover, from a crack or a bend to ruined pixels and altered coloration, is considered accidental (and thus covered) under AppleCare+, but that's not standard-issue for most MacBook owners.

As for security concerns, MacRumors writes, "Apple says that customers concerned about illicit camera access should watch for the green light that comes on when the camera is activated. The camera is engineered so that it can't be accessed without the indicator light turning on."