It is a hard pill to swallow, but we need to come to terms with the fact that hidden cameras are becoming increasingly popular. The rise of Airbnb and other rentals have coincided with the increased production of cheaper hidden cameras – making it easier for your host to potentially view your stay.
Good news is, if the camera is using an infrared light, your phone can pick up what your eyes can’t! Here are a few ways your phone could potentially detect the presence of a hidden camera.
Use your phone to find an IR-equipped camera
To capture motion or take photographs in low-light or dark environments, a camera typically uses infrared (IR) light that is undetectable to the human eye. Nonetheless, despite not being visible to the naked eye, the sensor in your smartphone camera should be capable of detecting the IR light emitted by the camera. It is worth noting that certain phones may only have the front-facing camera equipped with the ability to capture IR light.
If you want to try it out, you should first check to see if and how your phone finds IR signals by using a TV or other remote:
- Turn on your phone’s camera and aim it at the remote.
- Turn on the remote and look for a small light, either steady or flashing. (It will probably look sort of purplish-pink, although I’ve seen it reported as purplish-blue.)
- If you’ve tried this with your back-facing camera and didn’t see the small light, try it with your forward-facing camera.
Got it? Okay, now all you have to do to check for an IR-equipped camera is make the room as dark as possible (so that if there is a camera, the IR will be triggered), and then slowly scan the room with your phone. If there is an active camera with IR lighting, you should be able to find it.
Check your network
Another way to check for hidden cameras is to check what else is connected to the local network.
There are a number of network analyser apps out there that can find what devices are connected to your local network. For example, Fing (which is available for both Android and iOS). These apps can find and list all of the devices that are on your network; they can also let you confirm which devices you recognise so that you can easily find any that are not supposed to be there.
Of course these aren’t 100 percent accurate, but could give you a little extra peace of mind! If you’re seriously concerned, you can go out and purchase a radio frequency (RF) detector, which should pick up any signals coming from hidden microphones or cameras.
Source: The Verge