How to know if a land-line phone is bugged

Updated April 17, 2017

There are many ways someone can bug your landline phone using today's advanced technology. Under the federal law: United States Code, Chapter 18, Section 2511, it is illegal for someone to bug your personal landline phone without your consent or the consent of the other caller; each state may have additional restrictions as well. Several strategies are available for you to use to determine whether your phone is bugged; sooner than later, you will be able to comfortably put your mind at ease.

Check for volume changes. Volume changes heard while you're having a phone conversation can indicate a wide variety of things, but if your phone is bugged, they may be caused by either a wiretap or other similar devices. For example, if you are having a phone conversation and the other caller's voice is constantly going down low and then up high, your phone may be bugged.

Check for any abnormal noises. If you hear abnormal scratching, popping or static noises while you are on the phone, it may be an indication that your phone is bugged. Most bugging or wire tapping devices can be the cause of abnormal noises heard through your phone line.

Check to see if abnormal noises are coming from your telephone handset. If you place your headset on the receiver and you start hearing abnormal noises from your phone, this may be an indication that the phone is bugged. A bugging device known as a hook switch bypass will turn your telephone into a personal microphone or speaker phone. The microphone is able to pick up any noises, including your personal conversations, which are within a 20 foot range of the telephone.

Check for strange phone calls. If your phone rings with an unknown number and you pick it up, but no one is on the other end, this is an indication that your phone may be bugged. Also, if you pick up the phone and hear strange noises, such as the noises a fax machine would make, for less than a second, that is an indication that your phone may be bugged as well. The types of bugging devices that cause these types of disturbances are known as slave devices, harmonica bugs or infinity transmitters.

Call your phone company. Explain to the phone company that you believe your phone is bugged. After being notified, the phone company will schedule a date to come to your home and check your phone lines.

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About the Author

Crystal Buckle has written professionally since 2010. She brings a great amount of health-care knowledge to her articles for various websites. Buckle is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts at Marygrove College.