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Ring Camera App Won't Share Video With Police Anymore

#Ring, the video doorbell company, has announced it will discontinue its tool that allowed #police to request users' footage directly, a feature criticized for privacy invasion. Previously partnering with numerous police agencies, Ring enabled officials to download footage through private messages and made these requests public via the Neighbors app's Request for Assistance tool in 2021. 

The Amazon-owned company is now deactivating this tool, limiting police agencies to sharing safety tips and updates on the Neighbors app but not to request footage. Users may still receive direct requests from police agencies but must share footage voluntarily.

This move has been received positively by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights group, highlighting it as a step towards preserving American privacy. However, concerns linger about police potential to bypass the need for warrants to obtain footage, either directly from users or the company. 

Ring's policy allows for the release of customer information in rare, emergency situations, a practice exercised 11 times in 2022, according to the company. Privacy advocates urge users to insist on warrants before surrendering their footage to police, remaining cautious about the company's definition of 'emergency' in these contexts.

We'll continue to monitor these developments and encourage users to prioritize their privacy by demanding proper legal procedures before sharing their footage with authorities.


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