Stay Private: How To Disable Laptop Microphone

Sarah Adedun Updated on April 26, 2020
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When you purchase a laptop, one in-built feature you should always expect to see is the microphone. However, if you have no need for the microphone, the next thought will be how to block it on your laptop.Basically, if you want to know how to block the microphone on your laptop, go to any of these applications on your PC. 

It is important to note that blocking the microphone on your laptop can affect the efficiency of your system.

To know the applications making use of your microphone, check your settings

5 Ways to Block The Microphone On Your Windows Laptop

To block the microphone on a Windows Laptop, there are four steps which require you to go to different settings of the system. These sections are:

Device Manager: an applet which allows you to view and control all hardware connected to the laptop. It is an extension of the Microsoft Management Console and gives an organized view of all devices.

BIOS: this is an acronym for basic input/output system. It is pre-installed firmware used for performing initialization of hardware during the boot process.

Control Panel: Another aspect of a Windows operating system which enables the user to view and modify settings of a laptop. It contains applets that allow removal and inclusion of both software and hardware.

Device Properties: easily accessible menu to modify the settings within a laptop. Here you can see the information of a laptop from its name, the hardware and available options for system protection among others.

Settings: from the home page of the laptop, you can navigate to the settings menu and adjust certain features.

Follow these steps to block the microphone on your PC.

Option 1 – Use Device Manager

Using the device manager to block your microphone is pretty easy and takes less than 30 seconds. However, it is not entirely secure. 

If you have an advanced virus or malware on your system, it is quite easy for them to turn the microphone back on. Just ensure you have an anti-virus system in place to scan for malware.

Step 1: Right-click the “Start” button

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Step 2: Select the “Device Manager” option

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Step 3: Wait for the “Device Manager” menu to open up

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Step 4: Look out for  “Audio inputs and outputs” 

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Step 5: Click the “drop-down” arrow

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Step 6: Right-click the option for “Microphone” 

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Step 7: Select the “disable” option

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Step 8: You will get a prompt confirming if you want to disable. Select the “Yes” option

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Option 2 – Use BIOS

Another avenue to block your microphone is through the use of BIOS. Some laptops have this feature, but the process differs according to the manufacturer of the PC.

With the use of BIOS, what you are basically doing is preventing the booting of the microphone.

Step 1: Go to the “Settings” option in the “Start” menu

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Step 2: Select the option for “Update & Security” 

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Step 3: Read through the options on your left and select “Recovery” 

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Step 4: You will see a tab open with two sections.

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Step 5: Select “Restart Now” under “Advanced Setup”

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Step 6: A new window will pop up

Step 7: Choose “Troubleshoot” 

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Step 8: Select the “Advanced Options” 

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Step 9: Select “UEFI Firmware Settings

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Step 10: Choose “Restart

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Step 11: You will see the “BIOS” menu

Step 12: Go to the “Security” tab

Step 13: Look out for the “I/O Port Access” section

Step 14: Disable the “microphone” using the function key options

Step 15: Save” and “Exit

Option 3 – Go to Control Panel

Making use of the Control Panel within your Windows laptop is another means to block the microphone.

Step 1: Go to the “search bar” beside the “Start” menu

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Step 2: Search for “Control Panel” 

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Step 3: In the search bar for Control Panel, type “Audio” 

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Step 4: Select the “Sound” tab

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Step 5: Go to the tab for “Recording” 

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Step 6: Place the cursor on your default mic

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Step 7: Right click it and wait for a menu to pop up

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Step 8: Select “Disable” 

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Option 4 – Use Device Properties

Step 1: Go to the “Settings” option in the “Start” menu

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Step 2: Select the “System” option

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Step 3: Go to “Sound” option on the left side of the window

Step 4: Look at the “Input” section and go to “Device Properties”

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Step 5: Select the “Disable” option

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Option 5 – Use The Settings

Step 1: Go to the “Settings” option in the “Start” menu

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Step 2: Select the “Privacy” option

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Step 3: Go to “Microphone” 

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Step 4: Under “Microphone” , turn off the option for “let apps use my microphone”

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2 Ways to Block The Microphone On Your Mac Laptop

Use this video or the guide below to block the microphone on your laptop:

Option 6 – Block Internal Audio Input

Step 1: Select the “Apple” menu

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Step 2: Go to “System Preferences

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Step 3: Place your cursor at the search bar and type “Sound

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Step 4: A menu for “Sound” should popup

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Step 5: Search for the tab which reads “Input

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Step 6: Click “Line-in” 

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Option 7 – Mute the Microphone

Step 1: Select the “Apple” menu

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Step 2: Go to “System Preferences

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Step 3: Place your cursor at the search bar and type “Sound

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Step 4: A menu for “Sound” should popup

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Step 5: Search for the tab which reads “Input

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Step 6: Click “Internal Microphone 

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Step 7: Drag the “Input Volume” slider to mute

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Can I Turn Off Access To The Microphone On a Browser?

Yes, you can block browsers from accessing your microphone. Web browsers such as Chrome, Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox allow you to adjust permissions for websites you visit.

All you have to do to block the access to the microphone of your laptop on these sites is go to the settings and disable.

Mute vs. Disable Microphone

There are different reasons why you might want to block a microphone on your system. They include:

  • To prevent hacking
  • To prevent eavesdropping
  • You have no use for it

But, even with the best intentions for turning off your microphone, it can affect how the laptop works. Some applications need the microphone to effectively function. They include the voice/video-calling applications as well as games.

Conclusion

Blocking the microphone of your PC ensures that you can maintain your privacy. With any of the five methods stated above, you can complete the blocking action in less than a minute. However, if you want to enable the microphone again, all you have to do is follow the same steps to reactivate.

Sarah Adedun
Article by:
Sarah Adedun
Sarah Adedun is a technology enthusiast. When she is not reviewing tech products, you can find her sharing personal thoughts on Medium and researching ways to merge Finance and Technology together.

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