eavesdrop on

eavesdrop on (someone or something)

To intentionally listen to a conversation that one is not a participant in. Because it's likely that people will eavesdrop on our discussion, I think we should postpone it until a later time. If you don't stop eavesdropping on us, I'm going to tell mom!
See also: eavesdrop, on
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

eavesdrop on someone

to listen in on people having a private conversation. I saw her eavesdropping on them. Please don't eavesdrop on me.
See also: eavesdrop, on

eavesdrop on something

to listen in on a private conversation. She was eavesdropping on their conversation. Maria was eavesdropping on the telephone call.
See also: eavesdrop, on
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Who can guarantee that the equipment wasn't given to a group or a subject who abused it to eavesdrop on the citizens of Macedonia?
Giving an interview on the TGRT news channel on Wednesday, Bozkyr said the allegations that Germany has spied on Turkey are not particularly odd, as Turkey must also eavesdrop on others to protect its interests.
London, Jan 5 (ANI): Spiders eavesdrop on other males and copy their courtship signals as a likely means of stealing their mate, according to a new study.
"This new discovery shows that male wolf spiders also eavesdrop on the visual signals of courting males," he stated.
On December 17 of last year, during his weekly radio address, President Bush confirmed reports by the New York Times and CNN that, following the 9/11 attacks, he had given the National Security Agency (NSA) authorization to eavesdrop on Americans communicating with people overseas.
And the government has the right to eavesdrop on such calls as long as a warrant has been issued by the secret court established under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) of 1978--a warrant easily obtained.
11, 2001, President Bush authorized the NSA to eavesdrop on Americans suspected of ties to Al Qaeda without first obtaining warrants.
Researchers now say that harbor seals eavesdrop on the whales and can tell the harmless neighborhood fish eaters from roving gangs with a taste for fresh seal.
To achieve the insidious practice of tapping into secure data, wireless pirates need only to dial into the wireless network and then intercept or eavesdrop on backbone activity on a traditional Internet network of servers and desktops.
"We believe that using city employees to eavesdrop on conversations between reporters and elected officials has a chilling effect on the amount of information made available to the public on critical policy issues," The Associated Press quoted ACLU spokesman Edwin C.
I consider that this is a big political and diplomatic scandal which might affect Macedonia a lot" said Ruzin stressing that it is unacceptable to eavesdrop on countries or partners.
"Is Turkey in such a vulnerable position that anyone can eavesdrop on the country, including its foreign missions?
New electronic techniques are being developed to eavesdrop on the brain by detecting the activity of many cells simultaneously.
One such tool already in use to eavesdrop on the intact brain is called PRONG, for Parallel Recording of Neural Groups.
"The Turkish intelligence's job is to make sure no one is eavesdropping on Turkey and [when it occurs] to eavesdrop on the one other party," Zeybekci told reporters on Saturday.