Hidden camera pornography is (unfortunately) nothing new. It’s something that has existed for decades and, since the Internet has become a more important role in our daily lives, more prominent as well. Thanks to the fact that hidden cameras are becoming smaller, more advanced and more affordable all the time, being recorded without your knowledge is always a terrifying possibility. If you live in South Korea or happen to visit there, however, the problem may be worse than it is other places – at least as far as a recent BBC investigation is concerned.
The South Korea Problem
Stephen Evans, a correspondent for the BBC based in Seoul, South Korea, theorized that men in this part of the world go to greater lengths to capture secret photos and videos of unsuspecting women than they do other places. Pornography is illegal in South Korea, but based on the things he had heard and seen online he figured this did not matter. Evans quickly launched an investigation to answer a few key questions, namely: “IS there a hidden camera pornography problem in South Korea?” “Is this problem worse than in other parts of the world?” “Is there something that can be done about it?”
What he uncovered was positively horrifying to say the least. In South Korea, there is an entire cottage industry dealing in hidden camera footage from women’s restrooms, their bedrooms, changing rooms and just about any other area where they may assume that they’re safe. Evans discovered that the country-wide pornography ban has done little to curb the problem – if anything, it’s only served to increase demand. He notes that the juxtaposition between a strong disapproval of porn and an incredible demand is not unique to the area, but the lengths that men are wiling to go to in order to obtain this footage may be.
It’s a problem that, to their credit, the government is trying to combat – though their results leave a lot to be desired. There is an entire section of the Seoul police force that exists only to search for hidden cameras and other surveillance devices in women’s restrooms. Police in areas like Busan, a city along the country’s southern border, are regularly on the lookout for men with cameras who are acting suspiciously. These types of reports are taken very seriously by law enforcement all over South Korea.
Likewise, local media outlets regularly report on sting operations where police officers use metal detectors to find hidden cameras in public areas like women’s changing rooms.
Protecting Your Privacy
So does South Korea actually have a hidden camera problem? Yes, though this isn’t exactly unique to this area. Hidden camera technology becomes more advanced all the time. You can purchase a hidden camera right now that offers 1080p high definition resolution, night vision, audio recording capabilities, Internet streaming and more – all for just a few hundred dollars (including shipping).
As the technology itself becomes more affordable, the people who wish to USE that technology to do unsavory things will have greater ability to do so. This doesn’t mean that there is a problem with hidden cameras, necessarily – just in the way that people are choosing to use them.
Regardless, it’s always important for ANYONE in a public area to keep a watchful eye out for hidden cameras. In addition to looking in areas where these cameras are likely to be hidden, you can also purchase counter-surveillance equipment designed to find hidden camera lenses, block broadcast signals and more.
What we really have here is something like a “cat and mouse” game. As people use technology to do bad things, there will always be people like law enforcement out there working hard to stay a few steps ahead, protecting our privacy as much as possible. Unfortunately, this does not seem to be something that will go away anytime soon.