I want one word substitution for it. I thought intruder but it is incorrect.

3 Answers 3


That would be: Eavesdropper

The verb eavesdrop is to: "Secretly listen to a conversation"

(You didn't explicitly state that they were doing it surreptitiously but I assumed that it was implied by the nature of the question.)

  • 3
    That is an interesting word - eavesdrop. The OED has references for the noun, meaning the area close to a house, where water drops from the eaves, from as early as 868 (Kentish charter). But there is no reference to the verb - to eavesdrop, meaning to stand within the eaves drop to listen to the occupants speaking, until the 17th century.
    – WS2
    Commented Nov 28, 2015 at 9:16

If you want an informal word for this you could try earwig. In this context earwig is normally a verb:-

  1. to eavesdrop [Collins English Dictionary via the Free Dictionary]

but I have heard many times the person doing this referred to as an earwig.


Depending on context, consider;


overlisten: Rare to listen so as to overhear or eavesdrop OED Drexel University Library Services

prying ears Ngram

Carmen shrugged at Katie's questioning look, and stepped through the door, closing it against prying ears. Your Dictionary


listen in (on)

: to listen to a conversation between others; eavesdrop. AHD

Bystanders are those who are nearby, overhearers are possible interpreters and these include listener-ins (those that are attempting to listen) and eavesdroppers (those that are secretly listening) Google Books

be a fly on the wall

: to surreptitiously listen to another person's conversation Quotations Link



: (n.) an act of secretly listening to or recording a person's telephone or Internet conversations, often as part of a police investigation.

: (v.) to listen in on by means of a wiretap. The Free Dictionary

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