I don’t know about you, but the internet has made me quite the cynic. There’s been so much fake stuff floating around out there that my fake-radar pops up in almost every viral video. All of the heartwarming reunions, pranks and *SHOCKING* is enjoyable for the first thirty seconds, but it always creeps up that this might be/probably is just more fake garbage. YouTubers get outed for fake videos all the time, and it seems no matter where you turn there is another video that can be debunked. I just wanted to get that out there because there’s going to be a sizable amount of people who will cry “Fake!” at some of the videos in this list, especially the paranormal ones. I’ve had the same thought, but let’s suspend our disbelief for a moment and take these videos at face value.
Security cameras are supposed to keep us safe – or at least offer a transparent blanket of perceived security. Take a look at my article on how the government is basically spying on us at all times, but I digress. Security cameras are supposed to be a tool to keep the public from harm. Sometimes, though, they provide a much more unsettling view of the world around us. These fifteen security tapes hardly did anything to make people safer, and instead added to the collective worry of what’s out there. From ghosts attacking innocent people to aliens abducting a man and dropping him off two hours later, these videos do little more than put a layer of goosebumps on your skin.
15. Stairway Ghost
The CCTV (close-circuit television) footage of a stairwell has led many to claim that it was video confirmation of some sort of ghost or spirit. In the video, we see a woman with dark hair descending the stairwell when she stops dead in her tracks and appears to be terrified. At the same instant, we can see the door at the bottom of the stairs open, and a dark figure appears. The woman clings to the wall and then runs up the stairs from where she came, and the dark shadow appears to follow her up the stairs before vanishing in front of the camera. While it’s possible that this footage was fake or doctored, many people believe it to be pure confirmation of the spirit world.
14. Hotel Screamer
A security guard at the Wingate Hotel experienced quite the shock in 2003. He was sent to investigate reports of a woman screaming in room 209. There were no occupants of that room, so the security guard was tasked with finding out if anyone had broken in. When he got to the door of the room, an audible screaming can be heard coming from within. The security guard entered the room against the advice of the hotel manager, but he found no one inside. The screaming ceased when he entered, but the tape clearly shows a white, ghostly spirit exiting into the hallway. The security guard reported that, while no one was in the room, the rug was torn to shreds and all of the furniture was flipped over. The police were called, but the video ends with the hotel manager admitting over the radio, “That’s scary. I’m officially freaked out now.”
13. Woman vs Poltergeist
Security camera footage that is allegedly from a haunted hotel made the rounds on the internet and had many people understandably scared. The location was not publicized, though it’s understandable under the circumstances. The video begins as a woman is in the middle of the screen fiddling with her phone. A chair moves from behind her and she turns to see what it was. When she saw nothing, she goes back to her phone until a chair moves right in front of her. This scared her enough to stand up and attempt to leave the room, but a table is then flipped and thrown to block the door. She frantically looks for an exit but when she moves she loses her footing and falls hard on the ground. The woman appears to be knocked out as the poltergeist continues to move furniture around her. While there was no evidence to corroborate this, the video claims that the woman depicted died of a head injury.
12. Brian Shaffer’s Disappearance
Brian Shaffer was a regular college kid doing regular college kid things in 2006. He was planning a getaway with his long-time girlfriend to Florida, where his friends say he was planning to propose. Shaffer and some friends visited a bar one night, but that’s where things began to get strange. Brian was left alone at the bar when his friends went to the restroom, but when they returned, Brian was nowhere to be found. Assuming he just left the bar early and went home, the group left without much thought. It wasn’t until later that Brian’s friends and family began to worry and alerted the authorities. When viewing the security footage, police saw that Brian had entered the bar and then left, only to stand outside for a bit and then return. Police found no video of him leaving the bar, and were perplexed on what happened to him. They said that even if he avoided the security cameras, a nearby street camera would surely have caught him. Brian Shaffer has not been seen or heard from since.
11. Alien Abduction
Paranormal Borderline was a paranormal investigation show that aired in the 1990s. The show was sent a tape that was reported to show video evidence of an alien abduction. The tape shows the security layout of four cameras, with the top right being the one to watch. It showed the security guard opening the gate and leaving, when a flash of light and a glitch encompasses all four cameras. When the glitch ends, the security guard is completely gone. Everything appeared normal for another two hours, but at 1:00AM the same flash and glitch occurred, and the security guard can be seen laying outside the gate in the fetal position. The man then visibly vomits before getting back to his feet. While he reported to have no memory of what happened to him, the security guard quit his job soon after and moved far away from the area.
10. Tiger Attack
A security camera from a Beijing wildlife park caught the beginning of what would be a tragic event for one family. As the family is driving through the park, a woman exits the vehicle, presumable having a fight with her husband. She walks to the driver’s side door and opens it, when a tiger comes from off-screen and drags her away. The husband and the woman’s mother exit the vehicle and run after her, and another Jeep can be seen entering the frame and assisting to help. The woman survived her injuries, but her mother was mauled and killed before they could get her assistance. While it is a tragedy that this happened, it serves as a reminder to stay safe and inside whenever visiting these kind of parts. Wild animals don’t care if you’re having a bad day.
In 2010, a YouTube illustrator by the name of Benivey2 uploaded a video that went viral for all the wrong reasons. As stated, this YouTuber was an illustrator, and was filming a tutorial video for his channel. Most of the video goes through without incident, but about halfway through you can see the background as his cabinet opens behind him. The creator doesn’t notice and continues his tutorial, but anyone watching the video is fixed on the cabinet. A couple minutes later, the cabinet closes on its own, startling Benivey2, who turns around to see what just made that sound. The video ends abruptly as he walks to the camera to inspect what just happened. Needless to say, I’m sure Benivey2 is no longer filming in that apartment.
8. Cradle Robber
In October of 2014, a man broke into a family’s home with the intent to steal their valuables. He broke in at the dead of night as the family slept, but ended up being distracted from his original goal. A security camera set up in the home showed the intruder standing over their baby’s crib and watching it sleep. It is clear from watching the footage that he wasn’t just making sure the baby didn’t wake up. He was genuinely standing there, watching the child. He did not hurt the baby, and only stole about $60 and a laptop, though he dropped the laptop in a neighbor’s yard. While the couple was likely pleased that more wasn’t stolen, I’m sure that their peace of mind took a substantial hit after watching the tape.
7. Construction Creeps
This story was posted on Reddit, so there is a possibility of falsehood here, but the story is too interesting not to include. The Reddit user posted a story that began innocently enough. He bought an AV transmitter for his bedroom, in an attempt to get cable without paying for it. When he hooked it up to his television, he noticed that the image of a bedroom appeared onscreen. He determined that it must be picking up a signal from a nearby house, and this was confirmed when he saw his neighbors on screen. He and his family assumed that the camera was for something sexual, or to even catch one of the partners cheating. The family was having work done in their home, so the user thought it may have something to do with that. He was right. One day, he happened to tune-in to see a plumber rummaging around in the couple’s bedroom. He then went over to the camera, adjusted it, and left. When the police were notified, it became clear that the plumber was visiting the home at night and sitting outside, watching the couple in their bedroom.
6. Nanny-Cam Beating
This video may be the most disturbing on the list. You can explain away all of the supernatural stuff, but there’s not mistaking this video for anything but disturbing and real. A woman in New Jersey was home, watcher her baby daughter as her husband left for work. When she sits down next to her child and starts to watch TV, a man breaks into the house and begins to viciously beat her. The video shown on the news is mostly blurred, but there is no mistaking the sound of a bare fist landing clean on someone’s face. The woman attempts to stop the man, but he continues to beat her, even going so far as to kick her in the face. Before he leaves, he throws her down the basement stairs. The woman was lucky to get away with her life, and miraculously only suffered a concussion. The nanny-cam video that captured the beating lead police to arresting 42-year-old Shawn Custis, who was charged with attempted murder, robbery and two counts of child endangerment.
5. Lady in the Loft
In 2009, an actor by the name of Joe Cummings uploaded a video to YouTube of a security camera he placed in his own home. The video got over 10,000,000 views and it’s no wonder when you find out what it contained. Cummings was hearing noises around his apartment at night, and often awoke to find some of his food missing. He thought it was his girlfriend, who denied ever rummaging around in his place. Cummings set up the camera to catch his girlfriend snooping, or even sleepwalking without her knowledge. What he found was much more troubling.
At the beginning of the video, you see two scrawny legs descend from above the frame, presumably the ceiling. A woman’s figure is clear, and she proceeds to open the fridge and drink straight from a carton before putting it back. The woman even squats on the counter and pees in the sink. At one point, Cummings gets up to get a drink and the woman frantically hides behind a piece of furniture until he goes back to bed. When he saw the footage, Cummings left his apartment and called the police. They removed the woman, who was homeless and living in his attic for an unknown amount of time.
4. Figure in the Elevator
A video was uploaded to YouTube in 2009 that is unsettling if it is indeed real. The video is time-stamped from 2008, and shows CCTV footage of four security cameras in a hall, room, stairwell and elevator. The bottom right shows two men enter the elevator, with one leaning on the back wall, against the rail. The video follows the two men until they reach their destination, at which point the man with his back to the wall raises to leave. When he steps forward, in his place is what appears to be a decrepit old person, the likes of which are only seen in films. It is impossible for the figure to have been standing behind the man, as his back was against the wall for the entire elevator ride. The figure then moves forward slowly, to the doors of the elevator, and the video ends. If this is indeed footage of a ghost, it is a lot more clear than any other footage out there. There’s no shadow or speck of dust that could be playing a trick on the camera; this was a person.
3. Pakistani Child Abduction
CCTV cameras caught what has been an ongoing and terrifying phenomenon in both India and Pakistan for years now. The video shows a child walking down the road with, presumably, his mother. A white van then stops on the side of the road and two men exit. They grab the child from their mother and put them in the van. The women onscreen initially seem too shocked to react, but run after the fan as it’s driving away. Child abduction in broad daylight is nothing new to this area, as thousands of kids have been pulled off the street. These children are forced into a life of drug use, prostitution, body trafficking, and terrorism. Some are even found dead with some of their organs missing. Watching as a helpless woman have her children stolen from her is as unsettling as it gets.
2. Florida Clowns
The phenomenon of creepy clown sightings should not be news to most of you. Clowns have been terrorizing communities across the country for a while now. There were multiple clowns captured on home surveillance cameras during the peak of this clown terrorism. Jacksonville, Florida, was not immune when it had two creepy clowns haunting the area in 2014. Both can be seen stopping and seemingly posing for the camera. One was particularly sinister, as he can be seen carrying balloons and taking his time staring blankly at the camera before finding a pumpkin on the front porch. The clown stands in front of the camera and rips the pumpkin to shreds, all while staring at a hole through the lens. There never seems to be any violence when coming across these clowns, but waking up to find a clown staring at you through your security feed is still unspeakably creepy.
1. Elisa Lam
Elisa Lam became a viral sensation when a video was released following her disappearance. Since then, many theories and lore has developed surrounding the case, and it’s understandable when you see the video that may have been the last time she was seen alive. The video is taken from an elevator in a hotel where she was staying. Elisa enters, paces, presses all of the buttons multiple times, hides in the corner and continuously checks the hallway. The video while not graphic like some others, it is incredibly strange and unsettling. Elisa is clearly acting erratically, and even exits the elevator and appears to talk to someone in the hallway. She then exits the elevator before it leaves. Soon after the release of the video, guests at the hotel began filing complaints about the water. When the water tank was checked, Elisa’s body was found floating, naked, with her clothes and belongings next to her. An autopsy was completed after several days, and Elisa Lam’s death was determined to be an accident. The mystery surrounding this case has led many to believe that police were not being entirely truthful, and there were many more questions than answers.