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Airbnb bans indoor security cameras

Airbnb bans indoor security cameras

Airbnb bans indoor security cameras

SAN FRANCISCO – Airbnb has made updates to its official policy clarifying the use of security cameras indoors at Airbnb properties.

In a statement released on March 11, Airbnb said it is banning the use of indoor security cameras in its listings globally as part of its efforts to, “…simplify our policy on security cameras and other devices and to continue to prioritize the privacy of our community.”

Previously Airbnb allowed the use of indoor security cameras in the common areas of listings including hallways and living rooms, providing they had been disclosed on the listing page before booking, clearly visible and were not located in spaces like sleeping areas and bathrooms according to the company. The update to policy it said would simplify its approach and clarify that security cameras are no longer allowed inside listings, regardless of their location, purpose or prior disclosure.

“Our goal was to create new, clear rules that provide our community with greater clarity about what to expect on Airbnb,” said Airbnb’s Head of Community Policy and Partnerships, Juniper Downs. “These changes were made in consultation with our guests, Hosts and privacy experts, and we’ll continue to seek feedback to help ensure our policies work for our global community.”

2023 saw a number of notable incidents regarding security cameras in Airbnb properties where guests discovered cameras hidden in locations in private areas. One Texas couple reportedly sued a Maryland Airbnb renter when they discovered cameras in the bedroom and bathroom of their rental disguised as smoke detectors.

Besides the ban on indoor cameras, Airbnb said the revised policy will also see more comprehensive rules on the use of outdoor security cameras and other devices, including noise decibel monitors.

“Devices like doorbell cameras and noise decibel monitors continue to be permitted on Airbnb and can be an effective, privacy-protective way for Hosts to monitor security for their home and get ahead of issues like unauthorized parties,” Airbnb said in its statement. “However, Hosts will be required to disclose the presence and general location of any outdoor cameras before guests book. These cameras will also be prohibited from monitoring indoor spaces of a listing and are not allowed in certain outdoor areas where there’s a greater expectation of privacy, like an enclosed outdoor shower or sauna. Hosts are also required to disclose the presence of noise decibel monitors, which assess decibel level only and do not record or transmit sounds or conversations and are only allowed in common spaces of listings.”

Airbnb noted that the new policy update will take effect beginning on April 30, 2024.


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