You always want to think the best about your Airbnb host, but you can’t help but feel a little strange sometimes.
Is someone watching me?
There have been instances that people have caught their hosts watching them in their home — which not legal! If you’re staying somewhere alone or you want to make sure no one is watching, we can help.
Continue reading this article for tips on how to figure out if you’re being watched by hidden cameras.
Checking for Hidden Cameras in Your Airbnb
The thought of live video surveillance in your Airbnb doesn’t feel great. These services are meant to protect and keep homes safe but not when guests are staying there privately like they would in a hotel.
Check Description for Cameras
Make sure to read the fine print before you start stripping down in the living room. While bathrooms and bedrooms aren’t allowed to have cameras, there are some cases that homeowners can put cameras in other rooms.
Check the fine print and see if it says anything about cameras in the home. You may be surprised to see that there are cameras in the common areas.
Scan the WIFI
If you aren’t a technical person, it might sound a little difficult to scan the WIFI.
Since you have access to the WIFI, you’ll be able to scan it and see if anything public has access to the WIFI. When you’re scanning, take a look and see if there is anything that says “camera,” “private” or anything that might look like a surveillance device’s name.
You can easily scan the WIFI by downloading an app like WIFI scanner. No hacking skills required.
Check for a Reflection
Grab your cell phone and turn on the flashlight. Make sure the lights are out or dim in the room.
Go around the room and shine the flashlight everywhere in the room. If you see a reflection, that could mean there is a camera in that area. Get closer and shine the camera again.
You might find that the reflection is nothing but you could find there is a hidden camera behind the reflection.
The reason you’re checking for a reflection is that the plastic on the front of a camera lens will reflect the light of your cell phone flashlight.
Look for Out of Place or “Odd” Items
If you see two smoke alarms in the same area — that’s out of place. There is no reason to have two smoke alarms in the same area of the room.
You might also see pottery or other knick-knacks that look like they are out of place. You can move them around and see if there are any reflections. Lift them up and turn them over to see if you can see any signs of a camera.
Check for Hot Spots
If you’re really worried about being watched with hidden cameras in your Airbnb, you may be ready to drop a couple of hundred dollars on it. There are a couple of different smartphone attachments that will allow you to use heat-sensing technology.
Attach it to your phone and scan the room. You’ll be able to see any device that is generating heat. Make sure to point it directly at areas that you suspect could be housing a camera.
Keeping Yourself Safe
The thought of having a camera watching could make you worried about your personal safety. Whether you’re a solo traveler or if you travel with your family, you still might not feel safe knowing someone is watching you — possibly live streaming.
While host company Airbnb says you can cancel your stay for a full refund, what else can you do? You can decide to sue the owner of the home but if you still want to stay the night, you can simply cover the objects with a shirt or blanket while you sleep.
If you decide to stay the night, you may not be able to get a full refund unless you only found the cameras in the morning after staying.
Bring Indoor Locks and Jams
Whether you are being watched or not, you might want to bring indoor locks and jams. There are various products you can buy to help jam the door so no one from the outside can get in — even if they have the code.
With these rentals, you never know if they forgot to change the code. You want to make sure you’re safe and indoor locking devices and jams can make you feel more at ease.
Make sure the devices you choose to use won’t damage the homeowner’s property or you will have to pay for any repairs that are needed.
Keep an Emergency Text on Standby
Keeping an emergency text on standby will allow you to send for help without having to type it out. Save it as a draft to your emergency contact so you can simply hit the send button in case you have any problems throughout your stay.
Stay Up On the Latest Information
Now that you know how to stay safe from hidden cameras in your Airbnb, you might want to check out some tech of your own.
There are a lot of cool gadgets to play with and if used properly, there is nothing wrong with it. Our blog has a lot of new technology you can read about and see what you want to put on your Christmas wishlist so check it out.