Apps can access the built-in camera in laptops and tablets, or an external webcam that you’ve plugged in.
For example, you can take a webcam photo within some social networking apps to upload directly to your profile page. Skype, too, needs permission to access your camera in order to make video calls.
How do you control it?
If you don’t have any apps that need the camera in order to work, then you can use a blanket setting to disable camera access altogether by clicking Start > Settings > Privacy > Camera and click the Let apps use my camera switch to Off.
If you use Skype, or any other apps that might need the camera, then leave this setting On, and use the switches underneath to allow or disallow specific apps from accessing your computer’s camera.
The same theory goes for your device’s microphone. If you don’t want Windows listening in at all, click Start > Settings > Privacy > Microphone and set the top switch to Off.
But, as with the camera, certain apps – including Skype – need permission to use the microphone in order to work, so it may be better to leave the main setting On, then enable or disable individual apps as required.