"I Feel Like I'm Being Watched" — Airbnb Guests Find Hidden Camera in Light Bulb

Allison DeGrushe - Author

Jul. 1 2023, Published 9:19 a.m. ET

TikTok user @katelyn_boss19 says she found a hidden camera in a light bulb at her Airbnb
Source: TikTok / @katelyn_boss19

It's always been the case that Airbnb is hit or miss. Some hosts enforce too many rules, while others place hidden cameras around the rental to keep tabs on their guests. All in all, it can be a testing experience.

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In June 2023, TikTok user @katelyn_boss19 documented her and her friend's possible discovery of a hidden camera in a light bulb — and it has us super paranoid. Read on to find out what went down in this horror story.

concept image of bathroom mirror
Source: Getty Images
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Airbnb guests seemingly find a hidden camera in a light bulb.

In a viral video, which has amassed over 11.8 million views on TikTok, the TikToker revealed she and her friend were at their Airbnb and seemingly found a hidden camera in a light bulb. They called 911, telling the police they did not "feel safe" — can you blame them?!

The creator, Katelyn, offered more details in a second video, revealing they still didn't know if there was a camera. She said when the police arrived, one officer told them not to worry, while the other was convinced it was a camera. They inspected the rest of the Airbnb and didn't find any cameras, but the girls weren't letting this go that easily.

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In a third video, Katelyn responded to fellow TikTokers who asked why she and her roommate called 911 instead of the non-emergency number: "We were scared, and we thought fast. We did what we thought we needed to do."

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"We had no idea if this was a live camera. We had no idea if someone was actually watching us," she said. "If this was a live camera and they did see us ... who knows if they would have sent somebody [to] come and try to attack us. You never know [when it comes to] that kind of situation."

She added that they would be contacting Airbnb instead of the host. In the end, she said they still didn't know if it was a camera, and claimed multiple electricians warned them it could be one. However, it was no longer their problem because, in a fourth video, Katelyn announced that she and her friend got a new Airbnb.

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On June 3, she provided another update on the "traumatic experience." Katelyn said their OG Airbnb looked "nothing like the pictures," adding that a guy who used to live there told her it was supposed to be knocked down a few years ago because it's "so unsafe" and "disgusting."

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In the sixth and final video, Katelyn revealed that Airbnb offered her and her friend a full refund and allowed them to say in their "nice a--" second Airbnb for free (the company paid for it).

She also announced that Airbnb was closing the case: "We got a message from Airbnb this morning saying that they were gonna close the case, so I don't know if they were just gonna pay us and let us move on with our lives or if they just didn't find anything. I don't know the circumstances, but the case is closed."

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At the time of writing, it's still unknown if there was a camera, and the story was not corroborated by Airbnb. However, many fellow TikTokers hope Katelyn and her friend get some closure. A comment on the sixth video said, "I'd say you have a right to ask them to confirm if it was a camera. You changed in front of it."

Katelyn replied, "We're definitely asking. I need to have that peace of mind."

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