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If you're chatting with a stranger who's pretending to be someone they're not, they could socially engineer you out of valuable information like your home address or birth date or lure you to Web sites where your computer is infected with malware. You know, the usual Web scams, only this time it's up close and personal. Here are the latest Insider stories.
Out In Register. What bad things could possibly happen from all this?
Dan Tynan has been writing about technology since Mark Zuckerberg was in nappies. Related: Networking Computers and Peripherals.
Video chat is the next frontier for Web scams. Check out the latest Insider stories here. And if you must talk to strangers via Chatroulette, try to keep your pants on, OK? This story, "Chatroulette plays Russian roulette with your privacy" was originally published by ITworld.
Guess what, Chatrouletters? More Insider Out. In Register.
They also demonstrated how easy it is to con other CR users via canned video. If you've never used Chatroulette, the rules are pretty simple. Then by searching Facebook using information obtained in chats and comparing pictures, researchers were able to identify chatters. Hate to break this to all those video chat fans out there, but Chatroulette isn't nearly as safe and anonymous as it appears. The smart paranoid's guide to using Google. It's gotten so bad Ternivskiy is reportedly working on a 'sausage filter' to block the pervs.
They also said it would be easy to write software that could intercept communications from both video chatters without either of them knowing about it -- the classic "man in the middle" attack. It doesn't update in real time though, so someone's unlikely to come knocking at your door in the middle of a chat session. I logged on this morning and got a porksword in less than 1.
It gets worse. Well, if you're out there flashing your ham on the Net, or just getting a little too cozy with a stranger who isn't your spouse, you could end up publicly humiliated, blackmailed, or divorced. Your privates aren't private any more.
More from the IDG Network. Hit the Next button and try again. Turn on your Web cam, log in to the site, and wait for a random video to appear in the window above yours.
Don't like what you're seeing? The researchers were able to fool individuals into thinking they were viewing video of a live person when in fact it was a recording. Researchers find privacy flaws in Chatroulette. In fact, they never were.
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Your IP address won't nail your exact location the way a GPS device can, but it can come uncomfortably close -- and that information is available to every Web site you visit. No so, say the researchers. Then wait for the first guy to flash you.
Hey, if the Old Spice Guy can craft a personal YouTube reply to a tweeta crook can certainly target you via video chat. The lessons to be gleaned from this: Just because you're not giving out your name doesn't mean you're anonymous.
What is chatroulette?
Leave it to the InterWebs to drag everything into the gutter. A prolific freelance writer whose work has appeared in more than 70 publications, he is the former editor in chief of Yahoo Tech and a longtime contributing editor for InfoWorld and PCWorld. The free video chat service became instantly famous for its serendipitous pairing of complete strangers via video chat, as well as for the percentage of men displaying their god-given talents in varying degrees of excitement. Latest Insider.
Video chatroulette for you!
Researchers from the University of Colorado and McGill University have published a study showing that Chatroulette sessions are not nearly as anonymous as they might appear. The kielbasa factor probably wasn't what year-old Andrey Ternovskiy had in mind when he created Chatroulette, but it's what he got.
Still, given the random nature of the videos, Chatroulette seems totally anonymous and largely harmless.