People Who Have To Watch Security Cams Share The Most Disturbing Things They've Witnessed

Surveillance image of a bank
Unsplash | Museums Victoria

Security cameras have existed for decades, but they've really reached critical mass in the past few years. Many of us have them in our homes, while some of us may have to watch them as part of our job.

Naturally, since these cameras are rolling 24/7, they're bound to pick up some weird stuff. This r/AskReddit thread asked Redditors about the creepiest thing they've ever seen on security cam. It's a great read, but you might want to turn the lights on first.

Note: Some of these get quite dark, so read at your own risk. Seriously.

What's even real anymore?

A wall of security cameras
Unsplash | Nick Loggie

"I used to work 7pm-7am and around 3 or 4 am I would start seeing things from isolation and lack of sleep. There were many times I jumped to the cameras to see if what I was seeing was real or not. I often thought I saw people watching me and jump off the parking garage next door, but it was never real so I stopped worrying about it. Until one night I see someone watching me and think nothing of it... until I go to do a patrol and it turns out that person is real and has been staring at me for 20 minutes. At that point I just ran back inside and decided I was done my patrols for the night."


At least they figured it out.

Pause and play symbols on a whiteboard
Unsplash | Claudio Schwarz

"One day I’m sitting there minding my own business and noticed there was a girl sitting in the hallway outside one of the studios. She had come in with the band that was practicing and I just assumed she didn’t feel like sitting in the loud space with the band. So I got up and went to tell her she was welcome to sit in the lobby where there was a couch and tv. I got around the corner and she wasn’t there. I went back to the desk and there she was, sitting in the hall waiting outside the room. So I went back out to find her not there again.

"I assumed she had gone into the room so I went and knocked and they informed me that the girl had left a while before, just after they had gotten started practicing. So I went back and there she was, still on the camera. It was only then that I realized I had accidentally bumped the freeze frame button for the monitor..."


Twist ending.

Hoverboard gif

"At one of our locations the overnight onsite technician looked at the cameras and saw a customer floating through the hallways with their body upright stiff as a board. He said it send a shiver down his spine.

"Guy rounded the corner and on the next camera he could see he was riding on a hoverboard through the hallways."


Good, wholesome fun.

A fountain sprinkler spraying water into the air
Unsplash | Christian Nielebock

"We have an old fountain at my apartment building that has a large eagle statue. One night I had to check the security cameras because of a break in, and at 2am I came across footage of about 5 guys taking turns humping the eagle. One of them even stole the Santa hat I had on it."


Didn't they make a movie about this?

'Uncle Buck' smiling gif
Giphy | Laff

"Was my mom's experience. She works on a cruise ship and has to go through surveillance footage and put the footage in different folders. She said she has nightmares of one simple but creepy thing. One night a guy walked out of a cabin into the view of the camera and stood for a few minutes, doing nothing. Then looked up at the camera, moved as close to it as possible and smiled into the camera for about 5 minutes, but she said watching it felt as if he was looking into the camera for hours. She said it's just something she can't get out of her head and it made her feel so uncomfortable."


Plot twist: someone did see it.

Woman kicking bottle gif

"A year back I was working at a hostel and we have security cameras throughout the building. Watching the footage from the camera in the kitchen. It is about 2 am and a very drunk guest walks in, grabs some snacks, and accidentally drops an empty bottle on the ground. He then proceeds to kick it up into the air then kick it again in air, where it flies across the entire length of the room perfectly into the recycling bin. In his drunken state he threw up his hands, ran around in a circle clearly in shock at how amazing he is. Then after looking around he noticed there was no one there to see it. After that he looked visibly depressed and stumbled back out of the kitchen."


That got dark in a hurry.

A handgun on a table
Unsplash | steve woods

"Wasn’t a security officer, but worked in IT and managed the cameras. I was asked by the superintendent to go across town and pull up security footage for the police. The video was of a coworker coming in that morning at 2am with a gun. Set it on the desk. Came back a few minutes later and shot herself."


This one's quite a trip.

Nuclear hazard sign
Unsplash | Kilian Karger

"My first job out of college was working for a bigass security company (think worldwide big). I was doing Electrical engineering and security system design for them.

One of the first assignments I had was assisting in writing a report about a security system for a nuclear storage facility we had designed that had been infiltrated by nuns (no joke).

Basically, the facility got invaded by octogenarian nuns who started covering the nuclear storage facility in blood they had conveniently provided in water bottles. The footage quite a few ways."


Well, they tried.

An empty parking garage
Unsplash | Laekwon Oliver

"When I worked as a security officer it was my first week on the job I watched my boss and another officer try to talk a guy off of the top of our parking structure. Didn't work watched him jump off and land next to an employee who was coming in for her shift. Guy hit the ground so hard it exploded the belt right off of his pants. I will never forget watching that."


I guess he was harmless.

A security camera on a wall
Unsplash | Alan J. Hendry

"I used to work IT at a university, and last Easter we had a break in. We found the footage of the guy going in at 2 PM, leaving at around 3, and not really taking anything. Fast forward to 7 PM and the guy comes back in and is walking around the auditorium til 6 AM the next morning. In that time he proceeded to strip into his underwear, steal and wear a mask the Japanese exchange students made for the teacher, and smoke a ton. He managed to steal 6 full bags of random items."


When you just need to gamble a little more.

Close-up of a slot machine
Unsplash | DEAR

"I was working at pub in Sydney and watching the CCTV when I saw a guy continually cross and uncross his legs while playing a poker/slot machine. After a few minutes he walked to a corner of the room, [defecated] and proceeded to go back to playing his machine. Talk about being addicted!"


Well, that's horrifying.

A USB stick
Unsplash | charlesdeluvio

"I used to do IT support for a company that had a lot of heavy machinery moving around inside a big warehouse type area. This giant front end loader would scoop up material and dump it into a hopper. Along the sides of the floor were these huge concrete barriers, (I've heard them called Jersey Barriers and Mafia Blocks, but they are about ten feet tall) and this one guy's life was ended when the front end loader inadvertently scooped the base of the barrier and landed on one of two guys walking shoulder to shoulder through the plant.

I was tasked to review the footage, then make copies...six of them, to be exact...and then ensure that the footage worked and was self-executable and able to be run from a usb stick. So I had to watch the footage of this guy get killed over a dozen times."


The decline is shocking.

Aisle in a department store
Unsplash | Caique Morais

"I used to do asset protection for a Walmart in a very heroin addicted area. The creepiest thing was seeing how fast someone would go from completely normal to absolutely out of it in the span of a year because of the drug. You could build a timeline of their demise through CCTV pictures and video.

"One man in particular really stood out to me. The first time I apprehended him he was very polite and intelligent. Just stealing to get his fix. A year later and the fourth time I caught him he was basically a shell of a man."


A meal's a meal.

A deer in a clearing
Unsplash | Scott Carroll

"Was a security coordinator for a large electric company and had access to like 80+ facility's CCTV infrastructures. Was doing maintenance check on some random train station at like 3 AM, panned a camera as far to the right as possible to check that it was functioning, and this dude was on all fours eating a deer in the middle of the tracks. Watched him for like 10 minutes and went to get the other guy on shift, when I came back, the dude was gone. Rewound it, and the dude stopped munching on the carcass, wiped the gore off his face, and walked into the woods like he didn't have a care in the world."


Normal weekday for that guy.

Two security cameras on a pole
Unsplash | Michał Jakubowski

"I work in a retail store, and for a while I worked security here. Watching the security cameras wasn’t technically my job, but we were consistently short handed in that department and the manager was grooming me for promotion, so I got to fill in and watch the cameras occasionally. One day when we were reviewing footage from overnights, we saw this teenager calmly set down his shopping basket, take off his hat and glasses, and just charge at a wall. Hit it head on. He did this two more times. When he was done, his face was a bloody mess, and he put his hat and glasses back on and just left."


At least they were offered some help.

Parking deck viewed from above
Unsplash | Raban Haaijk

"Was watching cctv footage of a parking deck, and on the ninth level there’s this guy sitting in the middle of the deck, banging his head on one of the pillars. All of a sudden the guy just stops, and runs to the edge. Without stopping or jumping, he flings himself over the edge. I immediately call dispatch and told them what had happened. Few days later I was offered counseling for those events."


Why would you watch this?

A security camera on a wall
Unsplash | Alberto Rodríguez Santana

"Wasn't a security officer, but I worked at a 24/7 gas station for a while. One night my coworker accidentally killed himself while at work, and I made the mistake of watching the footage. He went to the back of the store with a bag of drugs (probably cocaine), snorted it and started acting funny for about 10 minutes. He then sits in the back office and gets fidgety/ thrashing around until finally he just goes limp in the chair. He had died of a heart attack and sat there for 5 hours before anybody came in, thought the absence of an employee was strange, and called the cops."


A true woodland creature.

A forest during the day
Unsplash | Matt Artz

"I used to be a security guard and was stationed at an outdoor engine parts manufacturers world head quarters office.

"They had a parking lot that was next to the woods and a man came out of the tree line during the night and was staring at the camera for an hour straight. We had called the authorities to make a trespassing complaint as none of us wanted to go out and confront him.

Around the hour mark he suddenly sprinted backwards into the woods. The police never found anyone."


I guess he's still down there.

Two security cameras on a building
Unsplash | Miłosz Klinowski

"Worked as a harbour master a while ago. Had to check the marina's cameras after a boat was abandoned at our docks. I was looking for the owner. I looked on the tape from the boats first night in the marina. The man who had sailed the boat in was standing on the end of his boat for 2 hours, barely moving. Then at 1:30am he just walked off the back and dropped into the water. He never came back up. Never found his body. Freaky."


Squirrels and bank robbers.

Surveillance image of a bank
Unsplash | Museums Victoria

"I’m not in security but I work for a bank and part of my job is checking the cameras in the morning for pings overnight, and then making sure all the pings were just squirrels or leaves etc. Last week I saw a ping on our back entrance camera and when I went to watch the video, it was a guy I didn’t recognize walking back and forth in front of the door at 3am for a solid 20 minutes. Like just pacing the whole time, and every couple minutes he’d stop and walk up to the door and stare into the camera. Then he’d go back to pacing. A car eventually went by and that must’ve set something in him off because he legit ran away and didn’t come back. We ended up calling the cops about it but I still have no idea who he was or what his deal was."