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back to article Girls tricked by STEAMY message: Webcam spyware student jailed

A cyberstalking computer science student who tricked women into taking computers with hacked webcams into steamy shower rooms has been jailed for 12 months. Trevor Timothy Harwell, 21, of Fullerton in California, will be forced to spend five years on probation following his release and ordered to complete a sex offender …

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Holmes

That's odd

I don't recall anything about prison sentences and sex offender treatment for the school authorities who used spyware to photograph students in their bedrooms. Strange, that.

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Re: That's odd

In progressive countries like the US, public school authorities have broad powers to act in loco parentis, that is, in the place of the parent. It's not a crime for a child's parent to see that child naked, so it's not really a crime for the same child's school vice-principal to see her naked, either -- apparently, not even if he goes to a considerable amount of effort to do so.

Not everyone cares for this, and it's far from how things have always been -- see Gatto for a first-rate examination of the history here -- but in countries where progressive hegemony holds sway, that's how it is. Progressive theory holds that the child belongs not to the parents, but to the state; when put into practice, the kind of laptop-cam spying to which you refer is one quite natural result. This is another. Perhaps the parents and children who complained about the laptop-cam spying should instead thank their lucky stars that the school officials in their case were satisfied merely to look, rather than touch.

(For those who think I'm making a mountain out of a molehill, I encourage you to examine the representative sample of progressive response to such travesties which may be found here. In that article, entitled "Parental Rights: New Menace to Youth Health?", the discussion of the East Stroudsburg case forms part of an argument that inflicting internal genital examinations on middle-school girls in the middle of the school day, without any concern for consent either from the girls themselves or from their parents and without even giving the victims of this violation the opportunity to say "no", fails to go far enough.)

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Linux

seriously?

the computer said leave it near steam, so the girls decided to take the laptop to the shower, AND have a shower themselves at the same time, AND position the laptop camera to point straight at them?

come on!!!!

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Thumb Up

Re: seriously?

Yeah I would have expected a much lower success rate. Unless they all phoned him up perhaps and asked him what to do, and he said "well when it happens to me I just bring it into the bathroom with me when I take a shower"

"And make sure the camera is pointing at the shower not at the wall"

Hmm, so still unlikely then.

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Joke

Bates Motel computer repair, M'dam!

Please don't let us interrupt your shower!

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WTF?

"You should fix your internal sensor soon. If unsure what to do, try putting your laptop near hot steam for several minutes to clean the sensor."

Now if that happened to me, and let's suppose I was someone who who knew nowt about computers and thought it was genuine even if a little weird - I wouldn't be taking the laptop into the bathroom with me, my first thought would be to head to the kitchen and brew up a cup of Twinnings!

And little nerdy perv boy, instead of seeing my lovely naked body all steamy and covered in soap, would instead be pulling his pud to images of my lime-scale coated kettle heating element and if he's lucky he might catch a glimpse of lip-on-porcelaine teacup slurping action but nothing more stimulating than that!

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As Stephen Fry might say

Porcelain.. Culture... ooooooooh

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Go

Yes, if I was the kind to not know better, putting the computer under a towel with a boiling jug (and some eucalyptus oil?!?) would be my first thought.

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WTF?

@LinkOfHyrule

These are 'merkins, these don't do tea. But still, WTF

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Re: @LinkOfHyrule

I know - you've hit the nail on the head here - if only they drank tea and had electric kettles.

I would have no idea how to cope with certain stressful and difficult situations over there - what is the US equivalent of "shall we have a nice cup of tea" or "shall i put the kettle on" which is the natural response we have to well, actually every bloody kind of situation when you think about it!

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Re: @LinkOfHyrule

> what is the US equivalent of "shall we have a nice cup of tea" or "shall i put the kettle on"

Shoot something ?

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Re: @LinkOfHyrule

Put the pot on. But there are a lot of Americans that drink tea. There even tea house on this side of the pound.

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Meh

Re: @LinkOfHyrule

I am am an American, and I drink so much tea that if you cut me I'd bleed Twining's Irish Breakfast.

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People like that give all us decent IT folk a bad name.

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Anonymous Coward

Oh come on you wish you thought of it first.

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FAIL

Speak for yourself, pervo.

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Anonymous Coward

Were They All...

Blond?

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Trollface

Re: Were They All...

No. Just regular Mac users.

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@LinkOfHyrule

Oooh. Sounds great.

How hard is the water? Full-fat, or a semi-skimmed milk?

Is there any spooning involved?

Rule #34 strikes again.

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Paris Hilton

Re: @LinkOfHyrule

lol Actually if we do have some Tea Fetishists in here, I'm cool with that, we could do some teabagging!

B-boom!!

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Anonymous Coward

Porn

Seriously, nowadays the Interweb is just stacked full of every conceivable kind of fetish porn you can imagine (and plenty you can't), so why the hell does anyone bother to take the risk with trying to do this sort of thing??! Just Google away my friend..!

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Re: Porn

Now I'm worried about the chap further up the comments with the Ann Widdecombe porno collection and how he came to acquire it - was that a case of "excuse me Miss Widdecombe- I notice your Windows ME seems to be playing up again, would you like me to take a look at your lappy for you and fix it? And don't worry, I wont remove your cat desktop wallpaper!"

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IT Angle

Re: plenty I can't

I dont know, I have a pretty creative imagination...

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Re: Porn

If I were to guess, I'd say that seeing naked people you know is more gratifying than random porn on the Internet. Those naked people on the Internet are already naked. But getting those hot girls in your neighbourhood to strip for you... good luck with that. Yet that's what you really want: naked.hot.neighbour.jpg or even .mpg; It's really really hard to find porn that looks like the girl next door. If you could get people to do that IRL, you'd spend more time in clubs and then use your own webcam - one "modded" so it doesn't have a light :)

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Re: Porn

Oh, and I have to mention: No, it doesn't make it OK to spy on people, even if human psychology can explain why people are drawn to doing it.

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Coat

I hate to be the first to say

PICTURES or it didn't happen...

mines the one with an old copy of busdriver in it.

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Meh

The bit that I don't get - if you take a laptop into a bathroom while you have a shower - unless you are having a not very steamy shower - the lens on the camera should just fog up in seconds?

I suspect that while he may well have been able to convince people to take the computer into the bathroom - he didn't actually get any pictures - but it depends if the computer was automatically taking pictures at intervals or if the guy had to be actually connected to the computer.

It's possible that he was able to get pictures of the women getting undressed - but I am not convinced of that either - It's one thing to take the computer into the bathroom - it is quite another to stand in front of it while getting undressed.

In any case - he is a dirty pervert and deserves whatever he gets.

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From the sound of it (and what I've seen of software like that), is that the camera can take a snap every $x amount of time, or be set to record when it detects motion. Since he had a remote control in to it, whenever the machine was connected later he could then scalp the images from it.

Also, most bathrooms are pretty small. If the person in question didn't face it toward the wall then it could likely see them. Remember these... err.. idiots didn't think it was recording them all the time so it's quite possible they didn't think to face it away.

And yes, he's a dirty pervert that broke the trust of people that had him do work on their systems, I'm pretty sure they Geek Squad would hire him.

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Silver badge

12 months??

That's a very light sentence. The investigators may wonder why they bothered.

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Re: 12 months??

He is a registered sex offender now. He will never get a security clearance. He can not be around kids or with in so many feet. Every time he moves he most contact the local police and let them know. His name and address will be made publicly available. Wren he is harassed at his home for being a sex offender cops are not likely yo do any thing about. Good luck getting a job with a back ground check.

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Meh

If they fell for that he shouldn't ber punished, the women should be for being that stupid.

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Anonymous Coward

Yeah, they were probably ask for it, right? I'm sure it is perfectly acceptable to sexually exploit anyone more stupid than yourself, just like it is perfectly acceptable to physically abuse anyone weaker than yourself.

And besides, I'd say they've already had their punishment. His turn, now.

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I'd be a lot less ambivalent about feminism

if it weren't for assholes like you.

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Trollface

Re: I'd be a lot less ambivalent about feminism

You're ambivalent about feminism, Aaron? You could have fooled me, since I had you pegged as one of the more devotedly misandrist male feminists on here some time ago. So how's that anti-male crusade going? Gotten any more of the competition jailed yet?

You should club up with David W. and Oolons on these forums, since they seem to hate males about as much as you do!

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Thumb Up

It's a fair cop, Steven -- or *was*

I'll cheerfully admit you had me dead to rights; the only problem I'd have had, a few years ago, with being called a "male feminist", was that I didn't believe any man deserved the title -- and if this makes me seem to have been so zealous as to have reached the point of self-caricature, well... This was the result not of any principled stance on my part, but rather was driven by an enormous well of self-loathing which I had not yet recognized for what it was. Turned inward, it would've driven me to suicide, so I turned it outward instead and ended up despising not only myself, but all men. (I can't say with certainty that every male zealot of the type I used to be is so motivated, but I wouldn't be surprised to discover that were the case.)

They say time heals all wounds, and it's certainly done so for me. More to the point, I realized about the same time that self-esteem is a thin and unsatisfying substitute for genuine self-respect, of the sort which like all respect must be earned -- at which point I began to work on earning my own respect. Once I'd begun to succeed at that, I found that a pat on the head and "good dog!" from radical Internet feminists no longer satisfied, and I started looking for other perspectives from which to understand the world.

It was around this time that, by the grace of God, I stumbled upon Mencius Moldbug, whose "Open Letter to Open-Minded Progressives" was a genuine revelation -- and, for those still mired in the progressive view of the world, about the truest test of "open-mindedness" anyone could hope to find short of, say, reading Admiral Semmes' Civil War memoir. (Blogspot archives being the crap that they are, this Moldbug concordance will save you a lot of time. Those interested in Admiral Semmes' memoir may find it here.)

Progressive hegemony being what it is, I had previously had no direct exposure to any other style of political thought, and anyone who's been both within and without progressivism well knows what I mean when I say that progressivism only acknowledges the existence of other schools of thought inasmuch as is necessary to deride and vilify them -- going to progressivism for an honest picture of any other political theory is exactly like going to Germany circa 1938 for an honest picture of Jews. (Moldbug is himself Jewish, which makes it all the more amusing that those few progressives who've heard of him so readily call him a Nazi.)

I've got plenty of work to do, so I won't belabor this any further, and it's a bit more public navel-gazing than I really prefer in any case; the point is that, while you're right to read my comments from a while back and spot me as a dedicated misandrist then, my more recent comments should be enough to show I'm telling the truth when I say that's no longer the case. (I don't know from Oolon, but David W. would certainly agree with me on this -- take, for example, this thread, in which he and I get into it on several subjects, from mens rea to feminist theory's inherent support for child molestation. Or, you know, just look back over a few pages of my recent comments, and see if I still seem to regard progressivism and feminism in the way you used to see me do.)

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Re: I'd be a lot less ambivalent about feminism

...and, yeah, I know I've got a lot to live down. Fortunately, I've got half a lifetime or so to do it in; with any luck, I'll have discovered how reliably to avoid making a horse's ass of myself some time before Cheyne-Stokes breathing sets in.

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Coat

Be honest, guys

When you read this story, didn't you at least crack a smile?

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Anonymous Coward

Background check?!

The problem is that in this economy many employers are relying on third party companies to check references etc.

It wouldn't be hard to list a number of a fictional company, with a suitable website for the purposes of generating a convincing glowing reference and when the number is phoned up Mr Unemployed Buddy answers with the appropriate information.

There is an entire online industry devoted to "cleaning up" dodgy records, if they query the low quality of the record then "my original got damaged during the move, this is the backup copy" usually works.

Don't even get me started on identity theft...

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Bronze badge

"specialising in fixing Macs"

nuff said.

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