Definition of snoop in US English:

snoop

verb

[no object]informal
  • Investigate or look around furtively in an attempt to find out something, especially information about someone's private affairs.

    ‘your sister might find the ring if she goes snooping around’
    ‘snooping neighbors’
    • ‘I left it in the middle of his bed knowing that he would know I snooped to find it, but I didn't care.’
    • ‘And if it does know an intrusion occurred, the victim company ordinarily won't know whether the hacker just snooped around a little, or actually managed to see a lot.’
    • ‘This is why she shouldn't be snooping in my private letters, for crying out loud!’
    • ‘It's when the media and the activists start snooping around that the problems start.’
    • ‘One of his agents is Jack who snoops about and pinpoints dangerous but valuable potential crimes.’
    • ‘While my sister was snooping in my room she spotted the Canada guide and asked if she could read it.’
    • ‘The idea of Government employees snooping through people's private records is one that will cause alarm.’
    • ‘This feature is basically a game wherein the viewer can snoop around Eddie's office and find all kinds of information about the production of the film.’
    • ‘Rather than snooping around and trying to retrieve it I thought it would be best to just own up and ask if you've seen it.’
    • ‘It's every parent's dream: a device for snooping on what teenagers get up to in the family car.’
    • ‘There's no telling what he'll do when he snoops around my house and finds out what's really going on.’
    • ‘In the meantime, I suggest you stop snooping on what the neighbours are doing and tend to your own lives.’
    • ‘I catch her going through my drawers and backpack, and she snoops on my little brother even more, searching his room and listening to his phone conversations.’
    • ‘Protect your privacy and keep anyone from snooping into your information.’
    • ‘When there's a guy who breaks into my business and snoops around without my permission, it gets pretty important to me!’
    • ‘After snooping round the house for a bit, we rode our bikes back to the hotel.’
    • ‘Does this involve snooping around company dustbins, intercepting illicit cargoes in high-speed chases?’
    • ‘Mom will probably look a little guilty and may admit she snooped.’
    • ‘This isn't just a question of nosy politicians snooping on the citizens they are supposed to be representing.’
    • ‘The idea of the state snooping into the affairs of private citizens is anathema in a country which takes individual liberties seriously.’
    pry, enquire impertinently, be inquisitive, be inquisitive about, enquire, do some detective work
    investigate, explore, ferret in, ferret about in, ferret around in, rummage in, search, delve into, peer into, prowl around, nose about, nose around, nose round, have a good look at
    View synonyms

noun

informal
  • 1A furtive investigation.

    ‘I could go back to her cottage and have another snoop’
    • ‘And if the neighbour dares to try and poke his nose in, pretending to wish me many happy returns when all he really wants is a good snoop around, he'll wish he hadn't.’
    search, nose, look, prowl, ferret, poke, exploration, investigation
    eavesdropper, pryer, interferer, meddler, busybody
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A person who furtively tries to find out information about someone's private affairs.
      • ‘The blond cheerleader narrowed her eyes and then ignored the snoop.’
      • ‘That way, dutiful snoops can see if any of the hundreds of alien detainees in custody have ever purchased a firearm.’
      • ‘My mother was a great snoop, she'd call it ‘cleaning up’ and I'd come home from a weekend at my Dad's to find she'd rifled through my things.’
      • ‘What I am saying is that if our personal information - some of it extraordinarily sensitive - is archived in corporate or government databases and protected only by the weak shield of the law, it's vulnerable to federal snoops.’
      • ‘But while Congress wants to shield citizens against government snoops, it has no such qualms when private companies collect the data.’
      • ‘She didn't care that he was one of the cutest boys she'd ever seen, he was a nosy snoop and that was it!’
      • ‘Those punish snoops who pry into someone else's private affairs, anyone who publicly discloses embarrassing private facts, and publicity that shows someone in a false light.’
      • ‘I was about to open it, but I heard voices echoing up the stairs, and, not wanting to appear as a snoop, I rushed back into the living room.’
      • ‘He knew he shouldn't look through it, and he wasn't a snoop at heart, but it was calling him.’
      • ‘Hiring a professional snoop is a good way to find out.’
      • ‘That's what I get for being a snoop, I guess - and for being so clumsy.’
      • ‘And, as usual, the law is unlikely to catch the professional snoop.’
      • ‘They could have been hiding photos and mementos of her somewhere, but I just wasn't born to be a snoop.’
      • ‘That's when you catch the snoop in your rear-view mirror, methodically recording your license plate in a notepad.’
      • ‘You're saying he was basically just being a snoop, and that's all there is to this?’
      • ‘I hope he doesn't think I'm some kind of snoop for touching it.’
      • ‘After a quick reprimand and warning that Santa doesn't like snoops, the matter was dropped.’
      • ‘Your personal matters and movements are supposed to be just that - personal, beyond the reach of either government or corporate snoops.’
      • ‘You think she was stalling so the snoop could finish her job?’
      • ‘I had a feeling you would look, you little snoop.’

Origin

Mid 19th century: from Dutch snœpen ‘eat on the sly’.

Pronunciation

snoop

/snup//sno͞op/