The video streams provided by webcams can be used for a number of purposes, each using appropriate software: Most modern webcams are capable of capturing arterial pulse rate by the use of a simple algorithmic trick.
Researchers claim that this method is accurate to ±5 bpm.
It is likely that owners of infected machines were tricked into clicking on a link that installs the malware.
When "captured" by the computer, the video stream may be saved, viewed or sent on to other networks via systems such as the internet, and emailed as an attachment.
When sent to a remote location, the video stream may be saved, viewed or on sent there.
Synack researcher Patrick Wardle says that the malware has been infecting Macs for at least five years, and possibly even a decade …
The malware is a variant on Fruitfly, discovered back in January and blocked by a mac OS update shortly afterwards.
The most popular use of webcams is the establishment of video links, permitting computers to act as videophones or videoconference stations.