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FBI Investigating Student Laptop, Candy Scandal

In one of the more bizarre happenings in recent memory, the FBI has now stepped in to investigate the claim that a school has wrongfully used the ability to remotely control student webcams.

Student Blake J. Robbins is suing LowerMerionSchool District in Philadelphia allegedly remotely activating his webcam. The remote activation of his webcam was exposed when student Blake J. Robbins was disciplined for "improper behavior in his home" by the Vice Principal, who provided a photo taken by the webcam as evidence.

The school confirmed that it has the ability to control the webcams, but that the capability has since been disabled in response to the recent issue.

The AP reports that the FBI is now investigating the matter to see if LowerMerionSchool District officials broke any federal wiretap or computer-intrusion laws.

Also revealed in the story is that LowerMerion issued an Apple laptop to each of its 2,300 students. Supposedly only two employees in the technology department were authorized to activate the cameras in the event of a missing laptop. The remote activation is only supposed to capture images, but not sound.

Now things are about to get even more bizarre. Robbins' attorney said on camera that the boy was caught on the webcam handling Mike & Ike candies, which could be mistaken for illegal pills.

We have a feeling that this is far from over.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • kyeana
    "Take the blue pill to see just how far the rabbit trail goes...and the red one, and the green one, and the yellow one and the blue one again."
    Reply
  • flyinfinni
    wow... This just keeps getting more bizarre and ridiculous. I can't help but feel like someone from that school is gonna get fired.
    Reply
  • animal_chin
    This would never have happened if they gave the children Windows based systems.
    Reply
  • Teirdome
    As American public schools are federally funded entities, wouldn't this qualify as the government spying on its citizenry?
    Reply
  • dantheman1001
    Wow is right... I'd be shocked if nobody gets fired here... There are so many BETTER ways to prevent laptop theft, how could anyone have thought this was a good idea?
    Reply
  • curnel_D
    flyinfinniwow... This just keeps getting more bizarre and ridiculous. I can't help but feel like someone from that school is gonna get fired.Not just fired, but escorted to his/her new federally funded vacation home.

    Prison is a pain in the ass, and they deserve every bit of it.
    Reply
  • Nightsilver
    Wait, wait. School officials are disciplining children for what they do at HOME?
    Reply
  • enderwiggen
    I bet you the camera caught him swallowing the "candies" whole rather than chewing.
    Reply
  • the_krasno
    kyeana"Take the blue pill to see just how far the rabbit trail goes..."
    Fail movie quote: Neo ate the red pill.
    Reply
  • dj1001
    the solution is so simple

    put a piece of electrical tape over the lens whenever you are not using it

    Reply