As creepy and illegal as it sounds, there’s a chance the next time you book a short-term vacation rental, the owner may have cameras installed.
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Sometimes they are for outdoor security purposes, although some bugs use hidden cameras.
Are cameras in a vacation rental legal?
Vacation rental companies like Airbnb and Vrbo have set rules when it comes to a host having cameras.
A host can have cameras in their rental space as long as they are in public areas like the front or backyard.
However, cameras are strictly prohibited in private areas of the space, such as a bedroom or bathroom. And if a host has cameras in their rental space, they should clearly state this in the guidelines so a potential renter knows before they book.
What steps should I follow before reserving my rental?
The first thing you should do is read the fine print of each rental you are considering reserving. Most rentals will have a lot of information listed, such as the amenities the rental offers and the house rules. If a host has cameras, she must clearly state this in the guidelines.
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If you don’t see anything in the camera guidelines, you can also contact the host directly and ask if you can expect any video or audio recording devices while staying at their property before you book.
If they are not direct with their response or if you feel any kind of aggression from them, feel free to move on to another rental.
What do I do once I book my rental?
Once you’ve booked a rental and go to the property, you can always check all the usual and unusual places to make sure there are no hidden recording devices that you can see.
Be sure to check into private rooms like the bedroom and bathroom. And look closely at devices like a fire detector that might be placed in front of a bed.
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Be a detective when you sign up
If you want to be sure there aren’t any devices you don’t know about, you can invest in a radio frequency (RF) detector. Some of the better quality ones are a bit more expensive.
However, you want to make sure you get one that will give you accurate results. Here’s one we found on Amazon, called Advanced GQ EMF-390,which, at press time, cost $119.90 and had over 2,200 reviews worldwide, with 73% giving it 5 stars.
Click here for more of my spyware detection equipment picks
Stay private while on vacation
My last piece of advice is to use a VPN. I recommend using one on all your devices and especially while traveling and staying in a short-term vacation rental so your information is encrypted and secure even if the WiFi network you’re on isn’t.
For the best VPN software, check out my expert review of the best VPNs for private web browsing on your Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices by searching for ‘Best VPN’ at CyberGuy.com by clicking the magnifying glass icon at the top of my website.
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Have you had problems with hidden cameras in your vacation rentals? Let us know your experience.
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