Hidden camera technology has gone through such a remarkable transformation over the last few years that it’s no wonder why they’re so popular with so many people. What was previously only available to local and state governments (and people who had a lot of money to throw around) has now transformed into something that anyone can have for just a few hundred dollars—or less, in most cases. Likewise, the cameras themselves used to be big and boxy. They were difficult to conceal, to say the least. Now, you’re talking about something so small that you often can’t see it with the naked eye.

Small Hidden Cam

Which, of course, poses a problem if you feel like you’re the one being watched instead of the one doing the watching.

Yes, it’s true that it’s getting harder to make sure that your most intimate and private moments stay that way, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s impossible. You CAN still find modern day hidden cameras even though they’re getting smaller and smaller every day. You just have to keep a few key things in mind.

Understand the Situation You Face

The first step to solving any problem involves finding out as much about said problem as you can. The same is true of hidden cameras, which can literally be anywhere these days. One private investigator, in an interview with WPTV.com, said that “pretty much anything can hold a hidden camera” at this point. Stuffed animals, a clock on your desk, a smoke detector—even something as small as the USB charging station for a smartphone or tablet.

So in order to find out whether or not someone may be spying on you, your first step should involve diving deeper into all of these types of items and more.

Look around the room and think about where a hidden camera would need to be in order to properly record whatever it is that you want to keep secret. If you’re worried that someone might have a camera aimed at your computer screen in your office to steal business secrets, for example, think about where in the room that camera would need to be to gain the information it needed.

Then, dive deep into these areas and look for any items that may be suspicious in some way. Is there a particular USB charger plugged into the wall that isn’t yours and you aren’t sure how it got there? This is absolutely something that deserves a closer look. Take a look at EVERYTHING that might have a crystal or a clean lens in it—like a smoke detector or the eye of a stuffed animal. Examine everything carefully to be absolutely certain you aren’t being watched.

But at the same time, it is also possible to turn the wonders of modern technology against your would-be snoops. For roughly $100, it is possible to buy a handheld device designed specifically to catch these types of modern day hidden cameras in action. Sometimes referred to as “lens finders” and by other, similar names, these devices will allow you to scan the room and find even the smallest camera lens hidden in a place like a wall or in a particular piece of furniture. These devices can often detect the types of radio frequencies these cameras would need to use to send audio and video information back to whoever placed them in the first place.

Finally, you can also do things the “old-fashioned way.” Turn off all the lights in a room and shine a flashlight at every object in the area. If a camera is hidden somewhere, you would likely see a little red light shining back at you when you shine a flashlight directly at it. Upon closer examination, you’ll probably find the camera itself… at which point you’ll be able to begin to try to figure out who put it there in the first place.