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Private Investigation Blog

How To Tell if Your House is Bugged

If you are in the process of getting divorced or separated, an executive or scientist for a large company, employed by the government, running for an elected public office, or are simply in the upper income bracket, you may be justified in your fears that your house is bugged. These are all high-risk occupations and situations that could lead to someone wanting to spy on you.

The two most common types of bugs are audio and video – cameras and microphones. Cameras can be installed in walls, ceilings, furniture and appliances. Microphones can be placed just about anywhere. Popular locations are in telephones and underneath lamps, sofas and other pieces of furniture that are not moved often.

Take a quick survey of your house. Does anything seem out of place? Most intruders are not able to replace moved furniture in the exact same position it was in before. Pay attention to the imprints that heavy furniture will leave in carpets and rugs, and if any furniture is touching (or not touching,) a wall when previously it was. Clean smudges on dusty areas are also an indication that something has been moved recently. Small, discolored areas on wall or ceilings may indicate that a pinhole microphone or small camera has been installed. Switch plates for outlets and light switches that are slightly off-kilter or whose screws are in different positions are a surefire sign that they have been removed and possibly bugged. Look for small piles of white powder on floors or walls near furniture. These are shavings of drywall or acoustical ceiling tiles that have been drilled through to plant a bug. These types of shavings can also occur near switch plates that have been removed. Acoustical ceiling tiles that are cracked, ajar or chipped may also be a sign of an intruder. Unexplainable new items in the home are also cause for suspicion, as well as ones given as gifts from salesmen or competitors. That pen, notepad, clock, desk clock, lamp or CD player may be a Trojan horse given so that they can spy on you. Intruders will also sometimes bug existing items such as clocks, exit signs, lamps and smoke detectors. Look out for a small hole or reflective area in the surface or if the item is slightly askew.

Radios, Televisions and Telephones are popular targets for bugs. A telephone bug allows a third party to eavesdrop on your private conversations, and sometimes even use your phone as a microphone to hear everything you do and say, even if the phone is turned off. Strange sounds, interference, and volume changes on your phone, radio or TV can be an indicator of a wiretap or other listening device installed inside. A high pitched squeal, beep or faint tone heard for a fraction of a second after you answer the phone is an indicator of a “slave” device, or a line extender being used on your phone.

Many listening devices operate on or just outside of the FM band. You can check for bugs in your house by turning a handheld FM radio to any and all “quiet” frequencies, then walking around the house. If you hear a high pitched squeal, it is an indicator of a microphone installed somewhere. You can usually pinpoint its location using this method. A small handheld television can also be used in a similar manner to detect bugs by watching for interference near channels 2, 7, 13, 14, 50-60 and 66-68.

If you begin noticing a vehicles sitting near your home for extended periods of time with darkly tinted windows or a back storage area without windows, you could be in the process of being eavesdropped on. Often this vehicle will be an SUV or van with a wire ladder or pipe rack on the top and is able to conceal a person. Often these vehicles will be disguised as service or delivery vehicles.

Finally, the most obvious and surefire way to know you are being bugged, is if the eavesdropper sends you a copy of your private conversations. This is an attempt to terrorize or blackmail the victim and affect them psychologically. This is often seen in cases of divorce, custody battles, criminal cases, and other situations where one side desires to psychologically undermine their opponent.

If you fear that you are the victim of eavesdropping in your home, do not hesitate to ask for help. A licensed private investigator has the knowledge and skill to uncover any bugs in your home and work to discover the culprit. Tim Wilson Investigations is a group of highly trained investigators who have experience with bug detection and protecting victims of eavesdropping.

Let Us Balance the Scales of Justice for You

Call today for immediate professional investigations.

Houston Investigations:  (713) 956-1111
Toll Free:  1 (800) 820-7006

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Let Us Balance the Scales of Justice for You

Call today for immediate professional investigations.

Houston Investigations:
(713) 956-1111

Toll Free:
1 (800) 820-7006

Texas Association of Licensed Investigators TALI Member Logo

License #: A10227

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35657 Mayer Rd, Hempstead, TX 77445