Ring Camera, owned by Amazon, no longer allows police to request videos from citizens inside the app. In a blog post, Ring announced that they are sunsetting the feature known as “Request For Assistance.” This was a tool that law enforcement utilized to request videos from citizens’ doorbell cameras in case of a nearby investigation. People were not required to submit videos if they didn’t want to, as the request was not mandatory. However, critics of the feature stated that law enforcement’s ability to quickly request such videos caused privacy concerns. The fear was that there were so many cameras in every neighborhood that the country became a surveillance state.
Public safety agencies, including police and fire, can still request doorbell camera videos from Ring. Instead of asking people to volunteer videos through the app, they must use more cumbersome and resource-intensive practices. One method police can use is going door-to-door and asking people if they can access their videos. Ring Camera’s policy does not affect anything outside of the app. Also, police can get a search warrant and forcibly take videos from Ring directly. Ring reserves the right to submit videos to law enforcement without the user’s consent under exigent circumstances.
Amazon’s Ring Will No Longer Allow Police to Ask Users for Doorbell Camera Footage | Complex
Ring Announces New Neighbors App Features, Sunsets Request for Assistance Post – The Ring Blog
Limits placed on use of Ring doorbell camera videos by police – YouTube
Ring will no longer allow police to request doorbell footage from users | AP News