Security scanners were surveillance devices used in bases, prisons, factories, mines, laboratories, and other secure facilities to detect infiltrators or invaders. Various types of security scanner were in use by the time of the Galactic Civil War. While the basic 2-dimensional camera has been in use since at least the Jedi Civil War, it was still in use millennia later, a testament to its reliability. Other types of security scanner included motion sensors, infrared sensors, weapons detectors, and holographic recorders. These devices were usually small and unobtrusive, capable of being installed virtually anywhere. Some of the more sophisticated holocams could record video and audio data. Other scanners included precision scanners designed to rapidly turn, track, and zoom in on a target, ultraviolet and infrared security scanners for low light environments, and long range exterior scanners. Some scanners, albeit with a limited range, could be concealed in other devices such as comlinks and datapads. Some of the smallest scanners, with only audio recording capabilities, could be used to record conversations and movement in a certain area.

This type of equipment was used by the Imperial scanning crew used for the inspection of smuggling compartments in the Millennium Falcon.