Searching for hidden cameras in hotel rooms and rentals is an emerging trend as more and more people report the invasion of privacy. USA TODAY


It hasn't been an easy year for the privacy of travelers, at least so far. Data breaches, surveillance worries and those troublesome cameras in airplane seatbacks and hotel rooms are enough to make passengers paranoid.

Maybe they should be.

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“Travelers are particularly vulnerable to security threats because they are in a different environment with unfamiliar risks," says Adam Dean, a senior security specialist with GreyCastle Security, a cybersecurity services provider in New York. "Generally speaking, travelers should assume they have no privacy and know that somebody is always watching."

Fortunately, there are ways to safeguard your privacy on land and in the air. These tips can help you deal with cameras, data breaches and visual hackers.

"Your privacy is being compromised pretty much everywhere," warns France Bélanger, a frequent traveler and a business professor at Virginia Tech. Generally, the key to protecting your privacy is to limit access to your information, she says.

What to do about cameras

Airlines swear – swear! – that the cameras in their seatback entertainment systems are disabled. But cameras in other locations may not be. The most troubling ones are in vacation rentals, like the one an Indiana couple discovered in their Airbnb rental in Longboat Key, Florida.  

More: United Airlines is covering up cameras on seatbacks amid privacy backlash

"Some 真人百家家乐官网网站homeowners renting their residences through 真人百家家乐官网网站home-sharing services may install security cameras," says Mike Tanenbaum, head of cyber for Chubb's North America operation. "Travelers should find out if the hosts are required to disclose the presence of surveillance devices."

If the rental comes with cameras, ensure they aren't in a sensitive area by conducting a careful sweep. Report anything suspicious to the host immediately – and if you don't like what you hear, leave.

More: How to check for hidden cameras in your hotel room or vacation rental