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  1. #1
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    Sep 2007
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    Oh Captain, My Captain
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    PA - School uses webcams to spy on students?

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100218/...ng_on_students

    Word to the wise for those of you who have lap tops from the schools....I doubt this was the only school system with this bright idea.
    email me


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  2. #2
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    Aug 2008
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    731
    OH, Wow, just wow!
    WHAT will I read on here next?!! That is UNBELIEVABLE!!!
    Thanks for the "heads up"......people need to know about this!

  3. #3
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    Feb 2010
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    i still kind of wonder what the saw....even if they shouldn't have seen it...

  4. #4
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    Dec 2003
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    14,187
    Well, duh, I'm suprised that none of the affluent parents ever realized that the school might be able to view the webcams from their central location. To my simple mind it sounds something like Yahoo Messenger where chatters could allow everyone to see their webcam if they chose. The school must have had it all set up or they have the ability to see still shots of the student using their webcam. Maybe that's how they caught the bad behavior. If they actually look in on families and computers in the home then they are as bad as the common voyeur and peeping toms if not worse. I'll never be accepting a laptop from any school after reading this.

  5. #5
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    Sep 2009
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    massachusetts
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    ridiculous.
    criminal charges and lawsuits anyone?

  6. #6
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    Jun 2007
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    This is creepy.

  7. #7
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    http://www.metro.us/us/article/2010/...0-85/index.xml

    How it could’ve been done

    Spying through a webcam on a Mac would be nearly impossible unless software had been installed on the computer, an expert said.

    "Someone made the decision to do this," said Ryan Cantor, of Springboard Media in Center City, adding that hacking through Apple's firewall is extremely difficult. "For something like this to happen means the person deliberately installed something."

    The computer would have to be turned on or in sleep mode to record, Cantor said, and the screen would have to be up

  8. #8
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    Dec 2008
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    Silicon Hills
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    The school is saying that turning on students' laptop webcams is a security feature - to be used to "help locate a laptop in the event it was reported lost, missing or stolen so that the laptop could be returned to the student."

    They also say "This feature has only been used for the limited purpose of locating a lost, stolen or missing laptop. The District has not used the tracking feature or web cam for any other purpose or in any other manner whatsoever."

    So why did the school report a student for misbehaving??

    Here's the school's "response to 'invasion of privacy' allegation"

    http://www.lmsd.org/sections/news/de...d_anno&id=1137
    What we are doing is just a drop in the ocean.
    But if that drop was not in the ocean,
    I think the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.
    ~~ Mother Theresa ~~



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  9. #9
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    Jun 2007
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    Here is a link to the lawsuit:

    http://craphound.com/robbins17.pdf

  10. #10
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    Aug 2003
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    Left Coast USA
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    8,846
    I think they should be looking at the "tech" who initially installed whatever the software was.


  11. #11
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    Jun 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by adnoid View Post
    Beyond creepy.

    Humorous note - there were some (now former) WS members who got all bent out of shape when I was made a moderator because they were convinced that I would then be able to turn on their webcams and see them naked in front of their computers. Seriously.
    And all this time they really needed to be worried about the laptop their kids brought home from school. Who knew?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by adnoid View Post
    Beyond creepy.

    Humorous note - there were some (now former) WS members who got all bent out of shape when I was made a moderator because they were convinced that I would then be able to turn on their webcams and see them naked in front of their computers. Seriously.
    adnoid that's just my secret plan to blind you

  13. #13
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    Dec 2008
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    Rochester, New York
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    Exclamation School District Uses Webcams To Spy On Students At Home-Seriously.

    This goes waaaaayyyy beyond disturbing, and enters into the real realm of "Big Brother". There have been many metaphorical uses of "Big Brother" but this is a literal one.

    If anyone has ever read 1984 they should remember that the main character has a TV like device that lets him see people and people see him. It is used by the government to spy on the citizens. The difference here is that the school district was doing it secretly while everybody knew "Big Brother" was doing it.

    Supposedly, this was only used to track stolen computers.

    Link

    Suit: School-issued laptops used to spy on kids on Main Line

    By Dan Hardy and Sam Wood

    INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS

    Lower Merion School District officials used school-issued laptop computers to illegally spy on students, according to a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court.

    The suit, filed Tuesday, says unnamed school officials at Harriton High School in Rosemont remotely activated the webcam on a student's computer last year because the district believed he "was engaged in improper behavior in his home."

    An assistant principal at Harriton confronted the student for "improper behavior" on Nov. 11 and cited a photograph taken by the webcam as evidence.


    If your daughter went to this school and used the laptop at home pictures of her getting ready for bed or coming back from the shower may soon be up on the internet.

    Another Link

    The idea that a school district would not only spy on its students' clickstreams and emails (bad enough), but also use these machines as AV bugs is purely horrifying.

    Schools are in an absolute panic about kids divulging too much online, worried about pedos and marketers and embarrassing photos that will haunt you when you run for office or apply for a job in 10 years. They tell kids to treat their personal details as though they were precious.





    These photographs in the wrong hands could be used as extortion to make a child do things they would never normally do.

    This sounds strange but I hope they do find photos that enter into the realm of child porn, (undistributed of course) because that could put people away for a long, long time.

    FREAKING UNBELIEVABLE!

  14. #14
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    Sep 2009
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    massachusetts
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    what the school did is criminal. life isnt a george orwell novel (well not yet anyways). what they did is illeagal

  15. #15
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    Sep 2008
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    This kind of thing is one of many reasons I homeschool mine. You just cant know who you're handing your kids over to until it's too late.


    (before you think I am too paranoid, the main reasons are educational ones )

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