Worldwide workers are now using mouse movers to avoid the micromanaging eyes of their bosses when working remotely.

These contraptions are also known as mouse jigglers and allow employees to move their mouse independently, allowing them to leave their workplace for many hours without their employers being notified.   

The remote working of millions of people has seen sales of these small devices skyrocket since the beginning of the COVID pandemic. Data from Tech8USA, a mouse-mover company, shows that the device’s popularity is increasing. Some even see the tiny gadgets as part of an integrated lifestyle, which many claim leaves employees mentally tired.

Leah from TikTok, who used the app to demonstrate her device, went on social media this year and shared the video with others.

‘If you work from home and you carry your laptop with you all over your house because you’re so paranoid that the 30 minutes you spend away from your desk during lunch your computer will go to ‘away’ and then you will be fired because no one will think you’re doing any work, I have something to recommend,’ she explains in a 20-second snippet that was posted in July.

‘It’s called a mouse mover,’ says Leah, a business lead at an advertising company who transitioned to remote work at the start of the pandemic.

She explains that the mouse moves while she’s away so it’s possible to go to the toilet without paranoia.

This clip has received more than 3,000,000 views.

Scroll down to see the video

Employees are using devices called 'mouse movers,' like the homemade one pictured here, to escape the watchful eyes of their bosses while working from home

To escape their bosses’ watchful eye while at work, employees use devices known as’mouse-movers’ such as the one shown here.

In a clip that has garnered more than 3 million views, TikTok user Leah explained how using the device has allowed her to approach her work in a more relaxing manner

In a clip that has garnered more than 3 million views, TikTok user Leah explained how using the device has allowed her to approach her work in a more relaxing manner

Vice interviewed Leah about how she has found the device to be more relaxed in her approach to work.

Prior to that, the status of her computer at work would automatically change from ‘away’ when she stopped using her mouse or stood up from her desk.

Your colleagues cannot physically see when you go to the toilet or grab lunch while working remotely. Leah said that she could even reset the couch for 30 minutes. 

“It was the last thing I ever wanted to do during those times was be paranoid because people believed I wasn’t working, especially when I felt that I was doing more work than I had in my life.” 

Leah’s video has a large viewership, which suggests that she isn’t the only person engaging in this practice. This was especially true since the advent of the pandemic when these devices were already popular for many years. reached her for comments, but she did not respond immediately. 

The searches for phrases “mouse mouser” and “mouse jiggler” both shot up in March 2020. They are now significantly higher than ever before. 

In March 2020, searches for the phrases 'mouse mover' and 'mouse jiggler' both skyrocketed, and are still markedly higher than they have ever been in the past, data from mouse-mover company Tech8USA shows

In March 2020, searches for the phrases ‘mouse mover’ and ‘mouse jiggler’ both skyrocketed, and are still markedly higher than they have ever been in the past, data from mouse-mover company Tech8USA shows

YouTube offers a way to get around the cost of the gadgets, which can range from $20-30. Users can also find simulations that move their mouse on their phones.

These videos can be played directly from users’ phones. The lines move along the screens of users. To simulate movement, employees who work remotely can put the mouse on top to mimic the motion caused by the mouse clickers.

Moving the lines should cause the cursors of an optical mouse to move.

This video has seen hundreds of thousands views and has quickly become a hit.

Remote workers are now able to build their own mouse-movers out of LEGO pieces, or as simple as weights on spacebars, in order to avoid the prying eyes from their bosses. 

Many online stores sell plug-and play versions of mouse-movers. Some devices rotate the mouse cursor directly from below. Others contain software that mimics mouse movements. Plugging the USB stick into a computer will make it behave as an active mouse.

Online retailers are also rife with plug-and-play versions of mouse movers, with devices that physically rotate the mouse's cursor from below, or USB drives that contain software that simulate mouse movements

Many online stores sell plug-and play versions of mouse-movers. They can physically move the mouse cursor downwards or contain software to simulate mouse movements.

Amazon has a variety of search results that can be used to find mouse movers. Remote employees have written thousands of positive reviews about the device, praising its ability to fool their bosses into believing they’re hard at work.

User One left five-star reviews for the USB mouse movement and described how it helps his wife get away from work in a timely manner.

“It works great. Simply plug it in, and it begins working automatically,” he said.

“No installation of a play-base system and a pug. It was the best I have ever seen. [sic]My wife works from home now because of COVID. 

She works very early and must move the mouse about every 10 minutes to finish her task. This is what she uses to wash dishes.

Another user said, “I used this device to work from home also.” 

“It works great, I also use Microsoft Teams. This mouse jiggler worked for me.” 

However, most users prefer to use the analog version of the mover, as some companies offer software that detects the drives.

Mouse movers like this one are placed under a computer mouse to keep the cursor active

The rotating circles found at the surface of these devices essentially trick a mouse into thinking its moving

Mouse movers such as these utilize a rotating cylinder at its center, physically rotating the mouse’s cursor from below

One US user stated earlier this year that he was forced to return to his home because of a pandemic that cannot be identified.

If the laptop has been inactive more than five minutes, my work computer logs me out. It takes almost 10 minutes for me to log back into the company VPN. I tried numerous home remedies, including putting my mouse in front of a timer. But that didn’t work. 

‘And getting one of those little software/driver-based USB “mouse jigglers” is out too because my work laptop would see it as “unapproved hardware.” The IT staff would send me an angry email. 

“So, I pulled the trigger on the VAYDEER mechanical mouse mover and jiggler. It’s a bit expensive at almost $40 USD, but it works great and doesn’t take too much time to move my mouse around or hit keys on my keyboard to keep my computer awake.

Meanwhile, on Reddit, in the subthread r/antiwork, users similarly championed both versions of the gadgets, detailing how they allow them to work less.

One Redditer said, “Since our company started working remotely, my company rides everybody’s ans if you’re ‘offline” in the Teams chat.” 

My boss is going to send you an email with all the sales people CC’d. Or call your phone and inquire why you aren’t there. I got fed up with it, and I discovered an app that allows you to move your mouse so that Teams/Skype/whatever other IMs show as active and doesn’t time out.

“Don’t let other people’s nonsense get you down.”

Another person said that similar results were achieved by placing the mouse over an analog wristwatch. 

Amazon sells many mouse-movers that use the same technology. They rotate in a similar way to a watch’s ticking.

Leah’s mouse mover is the rotating kind, from Tech8USA. 

Vice was told by Diana Rodriguez that their mouse movedr was first launched in February 2020. That’s a month before the US began experiencing pandemic lockdowns.

‘The issue of rewarding ‘presence vs productivity’ has always been around, but the forced virtualization of the workplace with the pandemic has made it worse,’ Rodriguez told the outlet. 

‘The pandemic has proved to be a catalyst to saying no to the ‘9-to-5’ schedule,’ she continued. “The workers have won.”

“They’re in power today. They appreciate flexibility and work. They strive for excellence. They value work-life balance and are not afraid of saying no to employers who don’t share those values. 

“The Mouse Mover” is an innovative tool for that shift. We stand by the knowledge worker.