Washington Residents: Is Your Privacy Being Invaded by a Hidden Camera, Audio Bug, or GPS Device?
If you live in Washington, your privacy may be in serious jeopardy. Continuous improvements in technology have made it easier than ever for people to buy and use hidden cameras, audio bugs, and to implant GPS devices on cars. A hidden camera, audio bug, or GPS device could be hidden in your home, office, or vehicle and you might not even recognize it’s there. This puts your privacy, and sometimes even your safety, at risk.
What Are the Signs of a Hidden Device Invading Your Privacy?
The signs that come along with a hidden device invading your privacy depend partially on the type of device used and where it is hidden. For Washington homes and businesses, some of the signs of hidden cameras and audio bugs include:
- The presence of unexpected “maintenance” or “utility” workers who want into your home or office;
- Drywall or ceiling tile dust on the floor or on furniture;
- You notice new decorative items such as a lamp, vase, or even a calculator that you did not buy or place in the room;
- Business competitors suddenly begin winning contracts you normally get or start using your business practices;
- You get threats of blackmail.
Of course, this isn’t an all-inclusive list of signs. You may also notice that when you turn out the lights that there are small LED lights you never noticed before. For cell phones, you may notice marked interference if you stand near a television that is turned on.
Even if you don’t see any of these signs, that’s not a guarantee that your privacy is secured. Contact Spy Catchers immediately on our toll free line, 1-800-373-8726, if you believe that someone may be spying on you.
Why Would Someone Want to Spy on You?
We know what you’re thinking. You’re just a regular person in Washington. No one has any reason to spy on you. The fact of the matter is that’s just not true. There are several reasons that someone may target you. The most common reasons are:
- You own a business. Even if you just own a small “mom and pop” business, competitors might still look for a way to eliminate you from the industry. When a business spies on another business it is known as corporate espionage. This could take place by the company literally sending someone out to your business to install a hidden camera or audio bug. They might even put a GPS device on your car. It can also happen by paying a current employee to place the device. An unhappy employee or former employee may also turn to hidden devices to try and find a way to get your business into serious trouble. These devices may be found practically anywhere, but popular hiding places include conference rooms and offices of key team members. They could also use devices to watch everything that’s typed on your computer or even use your web cam to spy on you without your knowledge. Cell phones aren’t necessarily safe, either. Apps can be installed to monitor or record conversations without someone ever touching your phone.
- You’re involved in some kind of legal dispute. It doesn’t matter if it’s a divorce, child custody matter, a personal injury lawsuit, a workers’ compensation claim, or other legal matter. If there’s another party involved, they could be looking for a way to spy on you.
- You’re in a bad relationship. Abusive relationships are extremely serious and dangerous matters. Technology now plays a role many cases involving intimate partner violence. Even if your partner hasn’t been abusive, a suspicious partner could still be spying on you. You may not think that’s a big deal because you have nothing to hide, but it’s also often seen as an indicator of more serious problems in the future.
- You’re the victim of stalking. You may or may not know who is behind it, but hidden cameras, audio devices, GPS devices, keyloggers, and taking control of a web cam without your knowledge are all commonly used ways for stalkers to know what the victim is doing at all times.
Are These Devices Legal in Washington?
Washington does have laws on whether other people can video you or record conversations without your knowledge. In fact, Washington is considered to have some of the strongest privacy laws in the nation related to these devices. Generally speaking, whether video taping may occur of another person depends on why and where it happens. For example, people have a reasonable expectation of privacy in certain areas, such as a bedroom or a bathroom. Even if the hidden camera isn’t found in an area such as a bedroom or bathroom, it could still be seen as an invasion of privacy. Washington does give individuals a right to sue if their privacy is being invaded. They can also sue if they are being harassed.
When it comes to audio bugs, Washington is a two-party consent state. This means that in order to legally record a conversation everyone involved in it must give their consent. If someone violates this law and records conversations without consent, they could face serious legal problems.
Depending on how a GPS tracking device is used, a court may find that it constitutes stalking. This may include, but isn’t necessarily limited to, someone using the GPS capabilities of a phone to track the whereabouts of another person without their knowledge and consent.
Ultimately, a lawyer would be able to tell you whether you have a viable case against another person who violated your privacy.
What Should You Do If You Think You’re a Victim?
If you live in Washington and think that someone may be invading your privacy by using a hidden camera, audio app, or GPS device, we have some tips for you:
- Say nothing about it to anyone. Don’t talk about it in person, over the phone (unless you know you’re on a safe phone), or send an email about it. The fact is that you don’t know who is involved or what sort of device may be used. There could even be more than one device involved. You could accidently alert the person that you know a device is present. They could remove it before it’s found. While this may seem ideal, nothing stops them from planting it somewhere else. Instead, call Spy Catchers immediately at 1-800-373-8726 from a secured phone.
- Keep up a normal routine. Changing your routine too much is a tip off that you know something is going on. The perpetrator could try to remove the device or devices before they’re found. If you want to get to the bottom of it and possibly assert your legal rights, you really need the device and, hopefully, its data.
- If you find a device, call us to help you remove it. These devices can be extremely sensitive. You don’t want to damage it or its data. Call us to schedule the device removal so that we can help you preserve this crucial evidence: 1-800-373-8726.
Don’t wait. If you think that someone could be spying on you, call us. We’re here to help you get your privacy back.