After a multi-year campaign led by Fight for the Future and outcry from civil rights organizations, Amazon has announced that it will no longer allow police to send private requests for footage to Ring camera owners through the Neighbors by Ring network. They also imposed limits on geographic location, amount of inquiries per incident, and restricted video requests for lawful incidents like protests.
"Amazon Ring is a product that is inherently incompatible with basic human rights," said Evan Greer (she/her), director of Fight for the Future, "The company has made it crystal clear that it has aspirations of building a private surveillance empire that is bone-grafted to government institutions in order to solidify its monopoly power. This latest change in how Ring’s Neighbors app allows law enforcement to request footage is clearly in response to the widespread backlash and grassroots activism the company has faced. But this policy shift does not change the fact that blanketing our neighborhoods in Amazon’s internet-connected cameras is fundamentally dangerous, exacerbates discrimination and racial profiling, and undermines community safety. We can’t trust Amazon to get this right. We need lawmakers to enact actual policies to protect people by banning these corporate surveillance partnerships with police entirely."
With over 2,000 partnerships, Amazon’s doorbell, floodlight, mailbox, and dash cameras record and collect data on our whereabouts, our homes, and our communities. This massive surveillance dragnet violates privacy, subverts basic civil rights, and fuels the same police violence that’s getting Black people killed.
Fight for the Future has a national campaign calling on local elected officials to cancel police departments’ existing partnerships with Amazon Ring and a campaign calling on Congress to launch a full investigation into Amazon’s surveillance empire.