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How to Find Out If Your House Is Bugged

Updated February 21, 2017

The possibility that someone placed bugs in your house may sound like something out of a spy thriller. However, a person can purchase bugging devices freely and use them eavesdrop on a home or office. If a recent professional or personal relationship turned sour, you may want to investigate whether your enemy bugged your house.

Listen for strange sounds coming from your phone. Volume changes or unusual sounds such as clicking or static while you use the phone, especially when you hang up the receiver, could indicate someone tapped your phone line.

Check your FM radio band for squealing noises. Using a portable radio, carefully scroll through the full spectrum of the FM radio band. If you hear a squealing noise, it could be feedback caused by a bug nearby. Keep the radio on this frequency and move it around the room to detect the location of the bug. The feedback volume increases as the radio nears the bug.

Look for disturbances in the floors, walls or ceiling of your house. Irregularities in the baseboard between the floor and wall, discolouration in finish materials or small piles of debris or dust may suggest a recently installed bug. Also check all electrical sockets and fixtures for disturbances.

Monitor vehicles parked near your house. Someone can listen to and record audio from a bug in your house from a short distance away. If you see the same service company or repair truck more than three times in a short period of time, you may be under surveillance.

If you are still suspicious after following these steps, purchase a bug finder. These small electronic devices can “sweep” your house for foreign frequencies, detecting hidden cameras or audio-transmitting devices.

Things You'll Need

  • Portable radio
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About the Author

Charlie Higgins is journalist, editor and translator based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He has written for a variety of lifestyle and niche market websites, including International Food Trader, The Olive Oil Times, microDINERO, Sounds and Colours, Connecting Worlds and The Buenos Aires Reader.