Visual hacker sneaking a peek at a coworker's monitor

Visual hacking experiment

The data is in – visual hackers are out there and 3M can help.

The visual hacking experiment. [1]

An eye-opening look at the need for visual privacy in the workplace.

Screens are capable of displaying private information virtually anywhere, making visual privacy an issue every organisation must consider.

To see how easy it is to capture sensitive company information through visual hacking, 3M and the Visual Privacy Advisory Council worked with a third party organisation, The Ponemon Institute, to conduct an experiment in which an undercover white hat hacker was sent into several participating corporate offices.

The results highlight the importance of addressing visual privacy in the workplace.

Key frame from a video about the Visual Hacking Experiment

See the results.

Learn how to help protect sensitive information from visual hackers.

  • Infographic about how often sensitive information was obtained
    Visual hacking is easy.

    An undercover white hat hacker was able to obtain sensitive information in 88% of trials. [2]

  • Infographic about how quickly visual hacking happens
    It can happen instantly.

    In nearly half of trials, an undercover visual hacker was able to obtain high level company information in 15 minutes or less. [2]

  • ): Infographic about how multiple pieces of information are at risk
    All information is at risk.

    An undercover visual hacker saw an average of five pieces of sensitive information per trial, including corporate financials, plus confidential employee and customer information. [2]

  • Infographic about how visual hackers were often unnoticed
    It often goes unnoticed.

    The visual hacker was stopped in only 30% of attempts. Meaning that 70% of the time, no one did anything to stop them. [2]

[1] Sponsored by 3M.


[2] Ponemon Institute, “3M Visual Hacking Experiment,” 2015, sponsored by 3M and the Visual Privacy Advisory Council.

Explore the Visual Hacking Experiment

Downloads and resources to help you to learn more about the Visual Hacking Experiment. [2]


  • Infographic
    See key findings of the experiment as an infographic.
  • Whitepaper
    An overview of the key findings from the experiment.
  • Full Study
    For complete details, download the full Visual Hacking study.
  • Subscribe to our Newsletter
    Sign up for the latest news and information on privacy matters.

Preventing visual hacking

Encouraging awareness of visual privacy in the workplace and equipping screens with 3M Privacy Filters is a great way to help reduce the risk of visual hacking.


  • Diagram showing how privacy filters work

    Keep visual hackers in the dark

    3M™ Privacy Filters use advanced microlouver technology to block unwanted side views, while providing a crisp, clear view for the intended user.

  • Support

    Please contact us for more information on our products or solutions.

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  • Shop now

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  • Data security study

    3M and Management Today brought together a selection of data security industry experts to discuss the key issues relating to information security and in particular, visual data security.

    Learn more about the studyArrow

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