Friday, April 02, 2010

Someone could be watching you on a hidden camera

We are so used to surveillance cameras. They are everywhere: in stores, businesses, elevators, lobbies, schools, and on the street. They are for our protection—a deterrent of sorts. Police use surveillance video to help solve crimes.

These cameras are visible and public, and they are used for good. However, hidden cameras obtained from spy shops or the Internet may, unfortunately, not be used for good.

Sometimes disgruntled spouses, landlords, building superintendents, employers or neighbors install them to spy on you. They are installed in bathrooms, dressing rooms and bedrooms—places where you expect, and rightfully so, to have privacy.

There are two versions of hidden cameras: hard-wired or wireless. Hard-wired cameras operate off the building’s wiring. Sometimes they have a cable going to a monitor, and often, to a recording device such as a DVR. Sometimes hard-wired cameras transmit images through the air to a receiver, which includes a monitor and recorder.

Wireless cameras operate on a small battery or batteries, and they transmit the video through the air to a monitor or recording device nearby. The thing you need to know with wireless cameras is that someone has to change the battery every day or so, which means they need free-access to the area where the device is positioned.

Cameras can be hidden in many places, i.e. clock radios, wall clocks, electrical outlets, paintings, plants, books, and sprinklers, just to name a few. The only limit is the imagination of the perpetrator.

It is illegal to place a hidden camera in an area where you have a reasonable expectation of privacy. The planting of the camera may also require the illegal act of trespassing.

Hidden camera finders can be purchased on the Internet for as little as $89. The Spyfinder Camera Detector is one of the ones I use in my work. It looks for the camera lens. It can detect hard-wired and wireless cameras, even if the power is turned off or the battery is dead. As is in all things, it is important to know how to use it.

If you suspect there is a hidden camera in your residence, office or car, contact me. I can detect it and remove it. Unfortunately, I cannot tell you who put it there, but you probably have a suspect in mind.

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