We live in a world where privacy can often come at a premium. This is because technological advancements have made all forms of surveillance much more accessible, and this also includes spy cameras. For that reason, it is now easier than ever for someone to get hold of a hidden camera and use it to spy on you. These cameras can be planted in many different locations such as your office, a hotel room, or, worst of all, your home.
Realistically speaking, this probably isn’t something you should be paranoid about. However, there is no doubt that there are spy cameras out there. And if you happen to have a good reason to suspect that someone might be keeping tabs on you, it is imperative that you take the appropriate steps. And the very first step should be to search your surroundings for hidden cameras.
Fortunately, your iPhone can be an invaluable tool in this regard. By making clever use of some of its functions, your phone can pull double duty as an anti-camera gadget. It won’t be quite as effective as professional equipment, but it can still provide you with very valuable insights.
So in the interest of helping you preserve your privacy, this article will explain four ways you can detect a hidden spy camera using an iPhone. Three of them rely on your phone’s built-in features, while the fourth makes use of third-party apps.
1. Find Electromagnetic Fields by Making a Call
When it’s working, an electronic device will create an electromagnetic field (also known as electromagnetic radiation). Naturally, this also applies to hidden cameras. Since these are small devices, these fields won’t be large, but they still may be powerful enough to interfere with a call signal.
So, if you’re planning to search a room for hidden cameras, one way to do a preliminary sweep is to make a call and move around while you talk. Make sure to cover the entire room and listen carefully for any interference – buzzing, crackling, etc.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that all interference automatically means you’re near a surveillance device – your signal might simply drop off for a while. However, if a certain spot is regularly causing this to happen, you might be on to something.
Furthermore, we’ve already said that a camera isn’t the only device that can emit electromagnetic radiation. So, you should turn off your TV, speakers, and similar devices when looking for cameras – this will make it easier to zero in on what’s interfering with the call signal.
2. Search for Infrared Lights Using Your iPhone’s Camera
Certain spy cameras rely on infrared lights, which are normally invisible to the human eye. However, the camera on your iPhone can detect this. In order to be sure, point the camera at a known source of infrared light – a TV remote is one. When you press a button on the remote, you’ll see a small flash of light on your phone – this is what you’ll be looking for.
So, scan the room and be on the lookout for similar light sources.
3. Use Your iPhone to Search for Unusual Wi-Fi Signals
Just about anything can connect to the internet these days, and surveillance equipment is no different. Not every hidden camera will do this, but quite a few modern ones will have a Wi-Fi signal. You should thus your phone to check for anything out of the ordinary.
If you see a Wi-Fi name you can’t identify, do an online search of it – it could be the same as the device’s product code. Also, be on the lookout for very strong signals that are coming from a source you can’t identify – that can be a sign that the device is in close proximity.
4. Use Dedicated Apps
Finally, the App Store has a selection of apps designed to help you detect hidden cameras. We’ll go over two of them.
Hidden Camera Detector
By using the camera and the flash on your iPhone, this app can help you track down spy cams. It does this by looking for the light reflected from the lens of a hidden camera. Just use your phone to scan the room, and you’ll see any potential threats.
The app isn’t foolproof as there are many other reflective surfaces you can encounter, but its algorithm will give you a list of suspicious objects that you can then carefully check – objects marked with red crosshairs have the highest probability of being a camera.
We’ve already talked about the electromagnetic fields spy cameras can produce. But in addition to interfering with your calls, you can also detect them by using a magnetometer. As it turns out, all iPhones since the 3GS model come with one of them built –in. What this app does is interpret that data and help you pinpoint any cameras in the vicinity.
You simply need to move your phone close to any object that seems suspicious, and the app will show you the intensity of any electromagnetic fields. Again, the app isn’t infallible, but it can certainly point you in the right direction.
Stay Vigilant and Protect Your Privacy
Your privacy matters, and you should absolutely do everything in your power to protect it. This doesn’t mean that there are spy cameras everywhere around you, but you also shouldn’t ignore the fact that cameras can be hidden in alarm clocks, smoke detectors, pens, and countless other objects you see every day. Therefore, it pays to be vigilant, and with the help of your trusty iPhone – you can be.