back to article New version of Chrome can WATCH and LISTEN

Google now has technology that could allow ads that offer classes to correct your posture, thanks to features in a new stable version of its Chrome browser. Version 21 of the browser offers users the chance to allow Chrome to monitor their activities with a PC's camera and microphone. The getUserMedia API makes this trick …


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  1. Long John Brass
    Black Helicopters

    In soviet Russia

    The porn watches you

    Browser assisted video/voice conferencing ... good

    Browser based surveillance .... bad

    Guess which option will be most popular with out ad wielding corporate overlords

    Time for webcams to come with a physical on/off switch

    1. aBloke FromEarth
      Black Helicopters

      Re: In soviet Russia

      ...or a bit of sticky tape.

    2. Azzy

      Re: In soviet Russia

      "In Google's America", I think....

      I see so much potential for abuse, by tricking people into allowing it, or finding some exploit to enable it... I'm not convinced it's worth the downside potential (particularly the audio part. I can put tape over my camera, but I can't even find, much less effectively block that tiny microphone built into my laptop.)

      1. jonathanb Silver badge

        Re: In soviet Russia

        Chatroulette is Russian, and that is an example of a place where the porn watches you.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It could well start listening to your conversations......

      Big Brother Is Watching You!

  2. LinkOfHyrule
    Big Brother

    Time to uninstall that shite I reckon and go back to the skanky verminous fox instead for all your browsing needs!

    1. kb


      If you like Chrome try Comodo Dragon, it uses the Chromium base but doesn't have the chrome "phone home" crud and has some nice security features that you can choose to use or not with a simple checkbox, either at install or in the options.

      I've been using it for a couple of years now and its great, its fast, works with any chrome extensions, and their secure DNS is nice and will catch a lot of malware infected sites. Its pretty sweet and unlike chrome every single feature is completely up to YOU not Comodo.

      1. LinkOfHyrule

        Re: Suggestion?

        Might give it a whirl then - I actually prefer firefox overall despite describing it as verminous - but I like to have a bit of browsage redundancy for those times when you get stupid error messages like "oops we droped a bollock and crashed because Adobe can't code their way out of a wet paper bag when writing flash plugins" etc..

  3. Magani

    Don't need an app

    "...uses it to create an app that tells you when to stop slouching,..."

    My Mum didn't need an app to tell me that, even if her back was turned.

    Penguins always slouch and scuff their feet/school shoes on the pebbles.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A thousand times no.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Google have to be the creepiest company to ever have existed. Hell will freeze over before I install any of their software on to any machine I use.

  6. toadwarrior

    People will go out of their way to exploit that and it creates features on the web specific to chrome.

    Fuck google ass for trying to reinvent IE6.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Do Not Want!

    Exploit in 3...2....1

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Who said new romantics were dead?

  9. petur

    To the paranoids above

    Your browser has been able to do this all along thanks to the flash plugin (and others), the functionality just moved from plugin to browser.

    So you cry you're going to uninstall chrome, where will you turn to? Check that other browser to make sure.

    So you cry exploit in 3 2 1... errrr if they do any exploit in your browser, they can access your hardware anyway, just made it a tiny bit easier.

    Do you know *all* browsers can read/write your disk? Doesn' *that* scare you? And beware of H20, it's a very dangerous chemical. Etc....

    1. GitMeMyShootinIrons

      Re: To the paranoids above

      "Your browser has been able to do this all along thanks to the flash plugin (and others), the functionality just moved from plugin to browser."

      If you don't like/trust Flash or Google, you could use an iOS device... And trust Apple instead....

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And Firefox use takes off again!

    " app that tells you when to stop slouching, or a service that figures out your weight, detects the fact you've departed from the keyboard at a likely snacking time and tells you not to eat that mid-morning muffin".

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    no webcam, no mic,

    no problem.

  12. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Big Brother

    Why am I not surprised it was Google that came up with this

    That is all.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not concerned about 3rd party...

    I don't know why people are concerned about 3rd parties exploiting this.

    It comes from Google. I'd say it's more likely than it should be, that a rogue engineer has accidentally included a feature that records everything - storing it temporarily - and sends it to Google when it notices that the computer is on, but no one is using it.

    1. petur

      Re: Not concerned about 3rd party...

      Most (if not all) webcams have an LED next to it that lights up when cam is active. The microphone migt be another problem.

  14. g e


    It's the mother of all eye-tracking tools on a massive scale so they know what part of the screen you're looking at and if you're looking at their ads or not.


  15. Big_Boomer


    It can take pics of something and then draw that in sand at the Science Museum?

    How long before someone gets their dick drawn in the sand?

    As for the espionage claims,.... all your browsings are belong to us, and have done for many years.

    If they want to track you it's already easy.

    I like the camera/tape idea but I would rather just disable the device in Device Manager.

    Works for Microphones too which tape is less effective on.

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Evil is As Evil Does

    In my dreams, I'd like to dig a deep hole, push everything Google into it and cover it over for good. The stench has become unbearable.

  17. David Pickering

    insecurity by a thousand ill-concieved apis

  18. Wile E. Veteran

    Am I wrong?

    I thought Chromium was the Open Source version with all the "call home" stuff in Google Chrome taken out by the Open Source community.

  19. digismith

    how long before a web hack

    to grade your O face when climaxing to online pron


    to grade your wanking technique.

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