Covering up sensitive information in audio calls


I'm currently working on a module containing recorded phone calls containing sensitive and personal information. I'm needing to coverup or "bleep out" this information to hte best of my ability and it not sound to obnoxious.

To this point, I have played with the White Noise and Tone tools within Audacity, however, I'm not sold on those options.

Has anyone else had any luck with this task? What tool did you use? What was your process?



2 Replies
Jeana C

Hi Ryan, 

We're currently working on a course that involves phone conversations as well. We ended up re-recording some of the phone calls to simulate the real conversation. Also, the silence tool in the Articulate Audio Editor can work well for a quick edit. You may be able to silence out some of the audio and add a caption or noise in it's place.

As long as you tell the user in advance that the audio will have sensitive info edited out then I think it can still be effective. Depending on the phone call, you may even want to give a quick general synopsis of the caller before the audio of the phone call begins. Providing a brief generic description of the caller may allow you to remove the sensitive audio altogether. For example, "The next call is a first time caller from ___ requesting ___ etc...."  Hope this helps. 

Sara Reller

We re-record our calls with private data, it lets those moments of someone saying their name or other data be simulated and fit in seamlessly. 

We tried silencing them but that didn't go over well because sometimes that meant long breaks of time. We tried adding a "beep" of some kind but again for the longer content that was rough. When we absolutely HAVE to use an actual call I cut the space to a second (even if it is a long address) or less and add a beep to it. But I really recommend spending the time to rerecord.