Amazon’s Neighbors app lets anyone, anywhere find users’ home location

Posted December 10, 2019, 2:27 PM

IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, December 10
CONTACT: Evan Greer, press@fightforthefuture.org, 978-852-6457

A Gizmodo investigation just revealed that it’s possible to obtain the locations of Ring doorbell cameras from post on Amazon’s Neighbors App. Amazon has continuously deflected criticism and claimed it is dedicated to user privacy.  The company insisted Ring users have a “choice in what information, if any, they share with law enforcement.”

It turns not only can law enforcement access the exact location of users, but anyone, anywhere can find out where users live. Gizmodo was able to locate geographic coordinates for more than 20,000 camera. Some of the coordinates placed you directly in front of the Ring device, while other coordinates were a couple hundred feet yet identifiers from posted videos made it easy to locate the user’s home. 

“People have been misled into buying these devices because Amazon tells them it will keep their family safe. But it’s a lie. Amazon’s surveillance network puts us all in danger,” said Evan Greer, deputy director of Fight for the Future. “Any bystander caught by a Ring device could be located using the geographic coordinates found.  People can be tracked going into buildings, like clinics, for private appointments. Children captured on video could be located by people with malicious intentions. The possibilities are endless. Amazon has failed to put any protections in place. Now, we’re all vulnerable to the consequences of their dragnet. We need Congress to investigate, and hold Amazon accountable for these dangers.” 

Last month, Fight for the Future and 17 other organizations launched a campaign InvestigateAmazon.com. The campaign calls for lawmakers to fully investigate Amazon’s surveillance empire and bring Amazon executives, including Ring CEO Jamie Siminoff, before Congress to answer questions. Tens of thousands of people have already taken action calling on Congress to investigate. 

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