Investing 12-03-2024 13:02 9 Views

Airbnb bans indoor security cameras for properties listed on its platform

Airbnb is banning indoor security cameras from rental properties listed on its site, citing privacy concerns.

The platform had previously allowed cameras in common areas like hallways and living rooms as long as they were clearly mentioned in a property’s listings.

Those will now be banned, too.

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

Airbnb said the new rules would likely only impact a ‘smaller subset’ of listings given that most properties don’t have cameras.

The company is also revising its rules around outdoor security cameras and other devices like noise decibel monitors. All of these must now be disclosed in property listings.

Privacy advocacy group Surveillance Technology Oversight Project (STOP) praised the move.

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

Airbnb shares have nearly doubled after hitting a low in December 2022 amid still-healthy demand, though it also has announced stock purchases that cause the price to go up. Even as its most recent quarter saw a record 99 million bookings, Airbnb said in a release it is now looking to ‘reinvent’ itself over the next several years.

“I think that Airbnb can go far beyond travel in the coming years, but I think we’re going to start with our core,’ CEO Brian Chesky said according to the Financial Times. ‘We’ll start with travel, and then down the road we can move beyond travel.’

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