No one likes to imagine that they are being watched, but the thought of hidden cameras is especially worrying to solo travelers who are concerned that a stranger – or even their own landlord, is watching them while they are in bed, using the bathroom, or getting changed in a hotel room or a store.
While it’s easy to dismiss this idea as paranoia if you have never been spied on, the truth is that hiding cameras are a growing problem, and many landlords are putting cameras in rental apartments, for their own voyeuristic purposes. There are even situations where a controlling spouse or partner may use hidden cameras – perhaps hoping that they will catch their partner cheating on them. The good news is that t is possible to detect those cameras if you know what you are looking for.
Hidden cameras are very small, and they can be difficult to find with the naked eye unless you know the room well. They can be concealed in clock radios, power adapters and even buttons. Unless you know what every item in the room is, and how long it’s been there, you can’t be certain that the item does not have a camera hidden in it.
So, how can you find a hidden camera? Well, the way that cameras work mean that the sensor in the camera will reflect light, so if you illuminate that sensor with a powerful enough light, you will be able to see it. That’s how a hidden camera detector works.
You can buy hidden camera detectors for just a small amount of money these days. A mini hidden camera detector costs about $80 and will help you to find hidden cameras in small rooms. You will need to pay more for a camera detector that would work in something like an office, but if you are genuinely concerned that you are being spied on then you may feel like it is worth the expense.
The detectors are very easy to use, but they are not perfect. To operate a detector, you look through the lens and press a button on the device. The detector will start emitting red light in short bursts, and if there is a camera in the view of the detector, the light will reflect off that camera’s sensor, and you will be able to see it in your view as a red flare.
However, you will only see that flare if you have the right viewing angle. This means that you could easily miss a camera if you don’t focus on just the right spot. You can increase your chances of finding a hidden camera if you focus on common concealment spots – such as clocks, smoke detectors, power bricks and other similar devices. Also, look at air vents, floor spaces, and anywhere else rarely inspected that could offer a good view of the room.
Note that because of the way these camera detectors rely on reflected light, they won’t work if the camera is placed behind something like a mirror. So, you’re unlikely to get a false positive if you use a hidden camera detector, but you cannot be certain that a negative result means you are completely safe.
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