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If an enemy company's hacker has Remote access to my computer (RAT), can they spy on me and screen record my activities for proof without me knowing it? Can they screen record all my internet activities (writing emails, dealing with companies, Linkedin chat) in the background (i.e. without my knowledge)?

I use Windows 8.1 PC, and unlike Windows 10, the screen recorder app is not built-in.

PS: If I wanted to screen record my activities on my PC, I would have to download an app and run it. That would show on my PC screen (the download, installation and running). Can the hacker execute all this in the background, me being totally unaware of it?

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Yes, of course they can, as any software can run in the background without any visual signals in the UI. Especially when a computer is compromised you can't trust anything it shows you, as it could be altered to hide the activities.

However, if the screen is constantly captured and it's sent to the perpetrator, it will probably generate a noticeable amount of outgoing network traffic.

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  • +1 Thank you Esa! So if that is possible, that would require the hacker to install an app on my PC (albeit "Secretly"), right? Is it possible to do that without an app? Dec 14, 2020 at 6:20
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    @AndrewRozario: There is no need to "install an app". There is only the need to "run some code". Running code can be done by installing new apps by also by just storing an executable on the system and running it, without actual installation. It can also be done by injecting code into existing apps. Thus, don't expect that you will always see a new app installed or some unexpected software running, it might be well hidden from such shallow analysis. Dec 14, 2020 at 6:30
  • @SteffenUllrich And what if I never downloaded/installed any app since I purchased my PC? Dec 14, 2020 at 6:32
  • @AndrewRozario: It does not matter if you downloaded/installed any app. It matters what the attacker does on your system. Dec 14, 2020 at 6:35
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    I think Steffen already covered that in his first comment. If the code was e.g. injected to another process, you wouldn't see anything suspicious on the Task Manager. Dec 14, 2020 at 6:57

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