For some people, the fact that you can’t tell if the camera on your phone is on or not is a very real privacy worry. They’re concerned that it might be possible for someone to remotely control your iPhone, and take photos of you without your consent. A new case currently seeking crowdfunding aims to prevent that by giving the iPhone a sliding lens cap. Called the iPatch, it’ll allow you to manually cover the front and back cameras except for when you want to use them.
The iPatch is designed by Michael Sorrentino, a television news producer, and uses a simple sliding mechanism to cover both of the cameras on the iPhone 5 and 5s. The front cover includes a small gap so that the proximity sensor isn’t blocked, which means that it’ll still correctly judge how close you’re holding it to your face.
The fact of the matter is, the actual chances of your iPhone getting hacked and remotely controlled are extremely small. To the best of our knowledge, there are no known cases of it happening (laptop webcams are a whole different story). However, that doesn’t mean that someone who has physical access to your phone might not install an app without you realizing it; or, alternatively, an app that you already have may be hacked from the server side of things. Having a physical barrier means that no matter what, you control when or how your iPhone is able to take photos.
If the iPatch gets funded, hopefully they’re smart enough to be aware of the fact that the iPhone 6 will likely be announced later this year, and will have a redesigned body.