Top 3 tips to keeping your family safe from hidden cameras

Posted at 8:25 AM, Feb 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-27 23:36:14-05

Hidden cameras are getting harder to spot, and after terrifying stories of cameras set up in bathrooms, it's important to know where to look.

Once you start looking, you'll notice cameras are everywhere, in your phone, on the street, and maybe in your home.

Vassilis Antjakas, Owner of Alpha Security, says some cameras, like those in home security systems, keep your family safe, while others have ulterior motives.

"There's everything, they have like the cell phones, they even, I saw last night they even have a screw it's one little screw is a camera," Antjakas is educating people on how to spot these tiny spy cameras.

  • Look under sinks, or countertops
  • Look carefully at holes in the wall
  • And look overhead at vents and sprinklers

While the cameras are getting smaller and smaller, they're still possible to detect. Several kinds of detection devices exist in stores and online, using frequency to locate a signal sent out by a camera that's recording.

Some have infrared light, "you just look through the light and look at different objects that you think are a camera and what happens is it reflects the lens, reflects the light off of the infrared," Antjakas said. The devices sell for around $20.

At ABC 2, we set up three hidden cameras, a cell phone charger, a cord plugged into a phone with a camera on the end sitting under the vanity mirror, and a light bulb, to see if anyone could spot them.

First our "Den Mom" Pat (who's worked in the building for years) came in under the pretense I had questions about the dressing room.

"Anything stand out?" I asked. "Oh this is a trick question, I knew this was coming" she said, suddenly scrutinizing the room. When I told her three cameras were recording her, she gasped.

When I pointed out the light bulb, she gasped again, and immediately pointed the offender out, saying she didn't notice it. "You would be expecting to see that something would be attached to the sprinkler or in the corner, more obvious, but these are totally something you see around your own house, you wouldn't even notice," she said.

A visitor accompanying a guest for Midday Maryland agreed to look around as well. Porlan Cunningham had never been to our studios.

"Where!?" She exclaimed when told three cameras were in the room with us. She also immediately tilted her head upward, analyzing the ceiling.

"The one on the bottom. Oh wow! That's kinda cool!" she said about the light bulb. When I pointed out the cell phone, she followed the cord and spotted the camera, "Hi!" She said waving at the camera, the size of a pencil eraser, "that's creepy, Wow!" 

"It freaks me out a lot because you don't think that you know cameras can be that small and you know hidden," Cunningham said.

Maryland law states using a hidden camera in a bathroom, dressing room, or any private area without permission is a misdemeanor.

More instances of video, recorded in inappropriate places, are popping up, proving it's better to be safe than sorry.