How to Turn off the Webcam Light on a MacBook

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If you open an application like FaceTime on your MacBook, you'll immediately see a green LED light next to your camera. This serves as an alert that your image is being broadcast, maybe because you've accidentally activated the webcam. It may also let you know if someone has hacked into your camera and activated the webcam to spy on you, but in the past they were able to disable that light to be more covert. If you're a frequent video chatter, you may simply not like that green light and want to get rid of it.


MacBook Webcam Indicator Light

The webcam indicator light has been a part of MacBook Pro laptops for years, and throughout that time, people have wanted to disable it. If they can disable the light, they won't have to learn how to turn off the camera on a MacBook. Ideally, you there would be a disable webcam light Mac setting, where you just flip a switch and it's off. That isn't an option, though, but there is an app for that. Several apps, in fact. Look for an app called "iSight disabler." You may find security settings on newer Mac operating systems won't allow these apps to access the settings, though.


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Turn off the Webcam

Another option for turning off the light is to disable the webcam Mac laptops use. This obviously won't be an option if you actually hope to use the webcam in the future, but you can always turn it back on again. If you're an advanced user, you can turn off camera on MacBook using the Terminal app and entering a series of commands as follows:

sudo chmod a-r /System/Library/Frameworks/CoreMediaIO.framework/Versions/A/Resources/VDC.plugin/Contents/MacOS/VDC


sudo chmod a-r /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/CoreMediaIOServicesPrivate.framework/Versions/A/Resources/AVC.plugin/Contents/MacOS/AVC

sudo chmod a-r /System/Library/QuickTime/QuickTimeUSBVDCDigitizer.component/Contents/MacOS/QuickTimeUSBVDCDigitizer

sudo chmod a-r /Library/CoreMediaIO/Plug-Ins/DAL/AppleCamera.plugin/Contents/MacOS/AppleCamera

sudo chmod a-r /Library/CoreMediaIO/Plug-Ins/FCP-DAL/AppleCamera.plugin/Contents/MacOS/AppleCamera


This will completely disable your camera. When you launch an app that needs it, it will say that no webcam is available. If you're a less advanced user, the best course of action is to simply remove whatever app is activating your light. But covering the light is probably the easiest way to hide webcam indicator light.

Covering the Webcam Light

Whether you're looking to disable the light or turn off the camera on a MacBook, the simplest solution has nothing to do with using software to disable webcam on your Mac. There are various options available to shut off your webcam and indicator light, from simply covering it with a sticky note to purchasing a camera cover. Many of these include a sliding door that allows you to use your camera with the flip of a switch, then slide it back when you once again need privacy.