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What is a Spy Monitor?

A spy monitor is a surveillance tool used to discreetly observe and record activities on a computer or device. It's often employed to ensure security, monitor user behavior, or enforce policies. With privacy concerns on the rise, understanding the implications of spy monitors is crucial. How might these tools affect your digital footprint? Let's delve deeper into the world of covert monitoring.
G. Wiesen
G. Wiesen

A spy monitor is typically one of two things: a small monitor or display used for viewing items through a camera or a program used to monitor the activities of someone through an electronic device. Small video monitors can often be used for a number of different purposes, typically allowing a person to see what is being captured on a camera, often in real time. Programs that can be used as a spy monitor can be used to record or view the actions of someone else who is using a device, such as a computer or mobile telephone.

When a video monitor is used as a spy monitor, the purpose of such a device is often to allow someone to secretly view video images without being obvious to others. This type of monitor can include a video display hidden in other objects, such as a pair of sunglasses that can be worn and connected to a video input device. Someone could also conceal a small monitor within a brief case or handbag and use the monitor to view images fed to the device from a remote camera. When this type of spy monitor is used with a hidden spy camera, someone can easily watch images that are being captured, without someone else being aware that he or she is being recorded and viewed.

Man holding computer
Man holding computer

A spy monitor can also be a small program that can be installed on a device such as a computer or telephone to monitor the activities of users of the device. When installed on a computer, for example, this type of monitor can track keyboard input and the programs, files, and websites used and accessed on the computer. This type of spy monitor can even relay the information in real time to another computer user, allowing that user to view on his or her computer exactly what the other person is doing.

When a spy monitor is installed onto a mobile phone, it will typically allow someone to be similarly aware of the actions of that phone user. This includes phone numbers dialed or received, as well as any websites accessed. Someone using this type of monitor can also typically view any text messages sent from or received on the phone, and even the location of a phone can be determined using global positioning system (GPS) technology on the phone. This type of spy monitor program is often used by an employer or parent to ensure that company phones or phones given to children are not being used inappropriately.

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Discussion Comments


This may sound obvious, but before you use a spy monitor to track your children's activities be sure you are ready to handle the information you receive. These programs can reveal a side of your child that you never knew existed.

Unless you suspect that your child is doing something illegal or dangerous and you are concerned for his safety, I recommend you try a less invasive method of parenting. This might lead to a better outcome for both parent and child.


Before using the spy monitor programs you should be aware of the laws pertaining to them in your area. In the United States, each state has its own set of laws regarding privacy and the installation of these types of programs. However, as a rule parents are legally able to monitor the phones, computers and other devices of their children.


In lieu of the other parental control devices and programs that can be used on computers, we have begun using spy monitors so we can keep track of what our kids are doing on their computers. My children know more about computers than I do, so I felt they might be getting around some of the other programs and devices we used to limit their Internet experiences.

I feel more secure with the spy monitor. I understand how it works and I have confidence that I can keep track of the sites the kids are viewing. It also helps that the kids know we could be watching and monitoring them at any time, even when we are not right there with them.

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