Thanks to the fact that hidden cameras have become so powerful, so readily available and so inexpensive, it’s very easy for someone to spy on you when you otherwise wouldn’t expect it. Whether you’re in your home or at your office doesn’t matter — all someone would need is physical access to that space for just a couple of seconds to get everything set up and ready to record.

hidden camera

If you’re uncomfortable with that idea (and you should be), your solution is simple: It’s up to you to find that hidden camera and remove it as quickly as you can. The good news is that this is NOT as difficult as you probably assumed it would be. You just have to keep a few key things in mind.

Examine Your Environment

If you really want to be able to detect hidden cameras with relative ease, the first thing you’ll want to do is examine an environment that you think is under surveillance very, very carefully. Remember that a lot of modern-day spy cameras come already concealed in devices that are designed to be slipped into a room without anyone noticing. As a result, it’s up to YOU to notice if you want to do something about it.

Take a look around your office, for example—is there anything in the room that recently appeared and you’re not quite sure where it came from? An odd pen on your desk that you’re pretty sure isn’t one of yours? A desk clock that you suddenly realized you didn’t buy? A USB wall charger that absolutely doesn’t belong to you? All of these items and more (including smoke detectors, stuffed animals, etc.) could be hiding a surveillance secret inside, so you’ll want to check your environment as carefully as you can.

When in Doubt, Turn off all the Lights

Another simple trick that you can use to help find hidden cameras involves turning off all the lights in a room and taking a look around. Remember that a lot of smaller hidden cameras have an indicator light on them to let the owner know when it is or is not recording. Turn off the lights and see if you can locate a red (or sometimes green) glow coming from some type of suspicious location. If you can, there may just be a camera watching your every move.

Buy the Right Equipment

If you haven’t found anything yet but still think you’re being monitored, one of the major steps that you can take involves investing in counter-surveillance equipment either at an electronics store in your neighborhood or on the Internet. This is the step that a lot of people assume you probably AREN’T going to make, which is part of what makes it so effective. Someone hiding a hidden camera in your home or office probably planned for every eventuality except this one, so don’t be afraid to use it to your advantage.

You can buy a professional-grade RF signal detector, lens finder or another bug detector for a few hundred dollars or less in a lot of situations. Once you’ve got the item in hand, simply follow the directions and use it to scan around the room. Not only will more advanced devices be able to find camera lenses that even the naked eye can’t see, but they can also usually pick up the wireless signal that those cameras are using to send data back to whoever placed them there to begin with.

Let Your Smartphone Be Your Guide

Finally, there is a wide range of different smartphone apps for both Android and iPhone that you can use to detect hidden cameras in a flash (no pun intended). These devices come in both free and paid variations and often use both the wireless functionality of your phone along with the built-in camera to detect hidden items throughout the area. If you approach a hidden camera with the app running, for example, you would likely get a warning message on screen. Note that this won’t work quite as well as a piece of professional grade equipment, but it will certainly yield better results than nothing at all.