Microphone is enabled by default

Bug #1559367 reported by Bob Meyers
This bug affects 1 person
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
elementary OS

Bug Description

From a commonsense security standpoint, a newly installed system should default to the minimum possible security surface. This implies that all microphones should come up disabled. If this is not done, then a new install could be more vulnerable to attacks (like acoustically transmitted viruses already demonstrated in the wild, not just human conversation snooping) until they are patched, which might be hours or days later.

I realize that this could cause confusion among non-security-minded users. A simple notification dialog could fix that problem. ("For your security, we have disabled all microphones. Visit the sound settings here to fix that..."). Such a dialog would also be a positive reflection of Elementary's concern for security.

Revision history for this message
Danielle Foré (danrabbit) wrote :

There should probably be some sort of "authentication" where applications must ask permission to use the microphone. So maybe "mute" itself isn't the answer here, but granting apps permission to use the device itself could be.

Changed in elementaryos:
importance: Undecided → Wishlist
status: New → Confirmed
Revision history for this message
Bob Meyers (bobgmeyers) wrote :

Requiring access permission to individual devices is a very good idea. I have adopted your proposal to network access also:


It should be changed to "wishlist" also.

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