How to Block a Listening Device or Camera Hidden in Your Home

By Jessica Kolifrath - Updated June 17, 2017
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Modern technological advances have led to the development of cameras so small that a spouse or boss can hide them practically anywhere. The same is true of microphones, many of which are sensitive enough to pick up a conversation in another room. Hidden cameras and microphones are a violation of your privacy if you are not aware of them. While there are many expensive and untested devices claiming to disable this equipment, there are a few simple things anyone can start with to protect their privacy at home or at work.

Detect the placement and the number of the hidden recording devices. Most methods for blocking these units requires you to target them directly. Use an electronic bug sweeper or manual methods to detect camera lenses.

Identify and remove items likely to contain a camera or microphone. If someone has recently given you a new houseplant, stuffed animal or lamp, it may contain a hidden camera. Replace phones making unusual hissing or clicking noises with brand new units directly from a retailer.

Manually disable or cover cameras built into your devices. Cameras in laptops, smart phones and other handheld devices are susceptible to outside control through viruses and tampering.

Cover or muffle the device. Move a potted plant to block a camera lens or cover a microphone with a wadded up rag to disrupt the recording. Remove it if you can, but in some cases covering it allows you time to gather evidence without alerting the person who installed the device.

Use a white noise generator. Play the radio loudly when having a private conversation on a tested and secure phone line. Security companies produce a number of white noise machines designed to transmit frequencies at a lower volume that affect the microphone, but still allow you to sleep without disruption.

Shine a basic red laser pointer directly at the lens of a hidden camera. The lens will reflect and magnify the beam, distorting what the camera records without damaging it permanently.


Look for unexplainable wires, blinking colored lights and odd looking openings in ceilings to find surveillance equipment.


Confronting a boss, spouse or roommate about hidden cameras or microphones can lead to a physical confrontation. Gather as much evidence as you can and contact the police instead.

About the Author

Jessica Kolifrath is a competent copywriter who has been writing professionally since 2008. She is based in the Atlanta area but travels around the Southeastern United States regularly. She currently holds an associate degree in psychology and is pursuing a bachelor's degree in the field.

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