Are Fake Security Cameras Effective?

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You may have a few good reasons to consider using fake security cameras rather than the real deal. Perhaps you live in a high-crime area and want to make it look like your home is protected. Or maybe you just want to deter casual criminals and don’t want to spend the money on a real security system. But the question remains – are fake security cameras effective?

Are Fake Security Cameras Effective?

Yes, fake security cameras can be effective in deterring criminals. But it’s important to understand that fake security cameras will not prevent all crimes. They’re simply a visual deterrent that may make a potential criminal think twice before committing a crime.

Fake security cameras are best used in conjunction with other security measures, like real security cameras, an alarm system, and good lighting. Simply having fake security cameras is not enough to discourage determined criminals.

When you do decide to use a fake security camera, make sure you get one that looks realistic. The more realistic the camera looks, the more effective it will be at scaring away thieves and burglars.

are fake security cameras effective

What are Fake Security Cameras?

Fake security cameras are, as the name suggests, imitation security cameras. They’re designed to look like real security cameras, but they don’t actually record video or provide real security to an area.

Fake security cameras are usually much cheaper compared to real ones, but they can sometimes be just as effective at deterring criminals.

Research suggests that even the sight of a security camera is enough to make many criminals simply move on to an easier target. So, if a fake security camera can make your home look like it’s under surveillance, it’s less likely to be the focus of criminals.

dummy security camera

What Do Fake Security Cameras Look Like?

Fake security cameras come in all shapes and sizes. Some look exactly like real security cameras, while others are more basic imitations.

Dummy cameras can be made to look like dome cameras, bullet cameras, or even infrared night vision cameras. The most important thing is that the camera looks like it could be real and is convincing enough to scare away potential criminals.

Besides the basic appearance, fake security cameras can be divided into two primary categories – ones with powered features and ones without powered features.

Without Powered Features

Phony cameras without powered features are the most basic type of fake security camera. They’re usually made from plastic and have no moving parts. You can find basic models for as little as $5.

With Powered Features

Powered dummy cameras are a step up from the basic versions. They usually have features such as flashing red LED lights, lighted infrared LEDs, and realistic motion. Powered versions usually feature rechargeable batteries, and some are even solar powered so won’t have to worry about recharging.

How Effective Are Fake Security Cameras at Deterring Crime?

In general, fake security cameras can be effective at deterring crime. A study conducted by the University of North Carolina found that homes without security cameras were two and a half times more likely to be burglarized than homes with security cameras.

The study also found that the mere presence of a security camera, even if it’s fake, can be enough to deter some criminals.

However, it’s important to remember that fake security cameras are not a panacea. There are no guarantees that a fake security camera will prevent all crime.

phony security camera

How Effective are Fake Security Cameras at Deterring Crime in General?

While fake security cameras can be effective at deterring crime in general, they may not be as effective at deterring specific types of crime.

For example, research has shown that dummy cameras are not as effective at deterring vehicle break-ins as they are at deterring other types of crime.

To maximize their effectiveness, use dummy cameras that are constructed of sturdy materials, simulate real infrared capability, and have built-in motorized motion features.

How Effective are Fake Security Cameras at Deterring Crime in High-Crime Areas?

Fake security cameras are probably not as effective at deterring crime in high-crime areas. Criminals here are more likely to be experienced and can likely tell the difference between a fake and a real camera.

A combination of crime prevention measures such as complete security systems, improved lighting, and security guards will work much better. Although, interspersing dummy cameras in different areas can also help to enhance a total security strategy.

How Effective are Fake Security Cameras at Deterring Specific Types of Crime?

Security cameras in general are an effective deterrent for various property crimes, such as burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. A fake security camera may be enough to fool thieves who approach a property without getting too close.

These “cameras” will not deter professional robbers, but inexperienced “part-time” thieves may avoid them. High-quality fake cameras may even pass closer scrutiny, even for more experienced criminals.

porch fake security camera

Where to Place Fake Security Cameras for the Best Results

It’s important to place your fake cameras so they’re as visible as possible. The more visible the camera is, the more likely it is to deter potential criminals. The most important thing is to make sure the camera can be seen from as many angles as possible.

Best Places to Install Fake Security Cameras

If you’ve experienced break-ins, the point where burglars have entered before is a good place to start installing fake security cameras. Your front porch is also a good place because it’s typically the first place someone would approach your home. The sight of a camera might also discourage package thieves from coming up to your home.

You can also put up dummy cameras anywhere else you might install real security cameras. Some common places include over the front door, overlooking the garage, and pointing at your back yard, front yard, or driveway.

Be mindful that criminals always look for weaknesses in your security system. If you have visible working security cameras in certain areas, you could cover dead spots with fake ones to keep burglars away.

How to Install Fake Security Cameras

Installing a fake security camera is usually pretty straightforward. Most cameras come with mounting hardware and instructions. You may need to do a bit of drilling for the mounting screws, but that’s about as technical as it gets.

Make sure your cameras are positioned at the right height and angle for optimal visibility. If you’re installing multiple cameras, it’s important to vary their styles and positions. This will make it more difficult for criminals to distinguish between real ones and fake ones. And for fake cameras with solar rechargeable batteries, make sure to place them where they’ll get good sunlight throughout the day.

fake stationary camera


Fake security cameras are effective in certain cases, but not as effective as real security cameras. The best place to install them is somewhere visible, and they work best in combination with other security measures. Despite their limitations, fake security cameras can still be a helpful part of your overall security strategy.


Are Fake CCTV signs legal?

There is no law against displaying a fake CCTV sign, but it may give people a false sense of security if they believe the property is actually being monitored.

Do dummy cameras have batteries?

Some, but not all, dummy cameras do have batteries. For dummy cameras with powered features such as swivel, working IR LED lights, or simple red flashing lights, Some, however, are solar-powered and will need to be placed in a location where they can recharge.

Can I install fake cameras?

Yes, you can install fake cameras. There are no laws against using dummy or phony cameras. After all, a phony security camera is better than having no protection at all, especially in areas where crime is common. Just be sure to place them in visible locations where they’ll be most effective.

What is the meaning of a “dummy camera”?

A dummy camera is a fake or phony security camera. Dummy cameras are designed to look like real security cameras, but they don’t actually have any recording or monitoring capabilities. They’re often used as a deterrent to criminals, who may think twice before attempting a break-in if they see a security camera. Dummy cameras can also be used to cover areas where no real security camera has been installed.

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