Home News Airbnb bans indoor security cameras under new surveillance policy

Airbnb bans indoor security cameras under new surveillance policy

Airbnb will no longer allow any indoor security cameras at its listings, the company announced Monday.

The short-term rental site’s policy previously allowed the use of indoor cameras in common areas as long as they were disclosed in the listing, visible and not in bathrooms or bedrooms.

“Our goal was to create new, clear rules that provide our community with greater clarity about what to expect on Airbnb,” Juniper Downs, Airbnb’s head of community policy and partnerships, said in a news release.

Hosts will have until April 30 to remove any indoor cameras before potentially facing penalties, including bans from the platform.

Outdoor devices, like doorbell cameras and noise decibel monitors that do not record sound, will still be permitted as long as their presence and “general location” is disclosed to guests before booking.

The company consulted with guests, hosts and privacy consultants before deciding on the new policy, Downs said.

The change is only expected to affect “a smaller subset of listings” since most do not have indoor cameras, the company stated.

Airbnb says it has more than 5 million hosts who accommodate more than 1.5 billion guests a year.

The Surveillance Technology Oversight Project applauded Airbnb’s decision.

“No one should have to worry about being recorded in a rental, whether the bedroom, the living room, or a hall,” Albert Fox Cahn, the group’s executive director, said in a statement. “Getting rid of these cameras is a clear win for privacy and safety, and we know that these recording devices are ripe for abuse.”

The new policy comes in the wake of Airbnb taking steps to remove tens of thousands of bogus listings and block hundreds of thousands of bogus listings from joining.

New regulations in New York City have led to thousands of listings being removed from the platform, as well.


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