The great thing about Android is how open it is. The not so great thing about Android is how open it is. It’s a double-edged sword at times. If you stick to safe apps, you’re going to be fine but the Google Play Store is littered with counterfeit apps that are bad fakes or malicious. CameraMicAlert is an Android app that can tell you whenever your back or front camera or mic is in use. Android phones, unlike laptops, don’t have a light indicator that can tell you if your camera is in use which is why an app like this can be a lifesaver.
Camera Or Mic Is In Use Alert
Download CameraMicAlert from the Google Play Store. Run the app and allow it access to your camera and mic. It also needs special usage access. The app will run constantly in the background.
When your mic and/or camera are in use by an app, you will get a notification that your camera or mic, or both are in use. The app adds a notification to the status bar that will indicate if the camera is being used or not.
CameraMicAlert can not only detect if your camera or mic is in use, it can also tell you which camera i.e. front or back is being used.
We tested the app out with the stock Camera app, the ported Google HDR+ camera app, and Snapchat. In all three cases, the app was able to accurately detect when the camera and mic were being used. CameraMicAlert doesn’t just alert you when the camera is recording. It tells you when the camera is in use i.e. if you’re getting feedback from the camera in the camera view finder, the app will treat it as the camera being used and alert you to the same.
The app was tested using safe, verified apps. Malicious app that try to access your camera or mic may not be as easy to detect and we didn’t have one on-hand to test the app with. That said, this doesn’t make the app useless. It detects if the hardware i.e., camera or mic on your device is being used or not and that’s what triggers the alert.
A malicious app may have ways to avoid being detected but that would require the app to be very sophisticated in the first place. CameraMicAlert is a reasonable safeguard against the ordinary malicious app and it may prove to be a good deterrent against more sophisticated ones as well. It doesn’t hurt to have the app on your device in any case.