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Saturday, November 27, 2021
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    Surveillance Expert Explains How To Spot Hidden Creep Cameras In Hotel Rooms

    @malwaretech/TikTok

    A surveillance expert has broken down how you can check for any hidden cameras in an Airbnb or hotel.

    The idea that you could unpack your bags, watch some TV, go for a nap and generally enjoy your getaway all while being watched is enough to send a shiver up anybody’s spine. It’s the stuff of horror movies.

    It’s probably not something you’ve regularly thought about – who really goes into a hotel room looking for cameras? – but a viral video on TikTok recently stoked people’s fears, and now a security expert has explained how you can carry out some simple checks to make sure you’re alone.

    Nobody wants to be spied on. (Alamy)Alamy

    Marcus Hutchins (@malwaretech) posted a TikTok showing how simple it is to look for hidden cameras. First of all, look for conveniently-placed devices where a ‘creeper’ may want to look, like a fire alarm right above the bed, shower head or alarm clock.

    Then, take your phone’s flashlight and shine it to see if it picks up any reflections and/or reveals the lens of a camera in any small holes.

    Thomas Ham, the owner of Spy Catchers LLC, a company that specialises in countermeasures to technical surveillance, also spoke to Fox 31 about tips for people staying away from home, including the flashlight trick, with lenses often showing a red or blue colour when hit with light.

    He also suggested downloading the Fing app, which works ‘if you have the WiFi password for the space you’re staying at… it will log on to that network and it will actually give you a listing of all the devices currently listed on that network. It tries its best to give you an idea of what each device is. Whether it’s a cell phone IP, cameras, things of that nature.’

    Hidden cameras are prohibited in hotels and Airbnb rooms. (Alamy)Alamy

    When you first enter a property, Ham said you should turn off the WiFi to see if you get a call from the owner, at which point you could address whether there’s any hidden cameras.

    If you’re staying in an Airbnb, there’s rules specifically in place to protect guests, prohibiting ‘any mechanism that can be used to capture or transmit audio, video, or still images’ in private spaces unless permission is given. This also goes the other way around, with guests forbidden from recording hosts who may also be in the property.

    ‘If you’re a host and you have any type of security camera and/or other recording device in or around a listing, even if it’s not turned on or hooked up, we require that you indicate its presence in the Things to know section under Health and safety. We also require you to disclose how guests will be monitored and if an active recording is taking place,’ the company’s rules state.

     

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