Ring has another privacy drama brewing.
Ring has a strong reputation as a solid choice for home security, built largely around the Amazon-owned company's signature video doorbell. However, in recent times it's received just as much attention for the potential privacy issues surrounding the use of its products as it has for its engineering prowess.
First there was its ties to US law enforcement and the way it may handle your data around private contracts.
Amazon's Ring home security system has a reputation that precedes it. For months, we've been hearing tales from the U.S. of creepy hacks, police monitoring and an overall lack of security, all thanks to Ring. Now, Australia's getting a chance to experience it for themselves, with the Ring Indoor Cam set for launch in Australia in February.
There were serious questions also around its ongoing security after a US family was terrorised by someone – it's still not clear who – tapping into the Ring video feed in their 8 year old daughter's room. It was enough to make Jamie Siminoff, Ring's CEO cry, apparently.
Just recently, the EFF criticised Ring in a report that called out the company's use of third party personal trackers that may store personal information with many users being unaware of this. All we had to go on was the EFF's assertion that this was the case, until now.
In a statement sent to Gizmodo Australia, a spokesperson for Ring confirmed that the company does indeed use third party trackers, but it insists this is entirely within the scope of its end user agreement and only for Ring's purposes.
"Like many companies, Ring uses third-party service providers to evaluate the use of our mobile app, which helps us improve features, optimize the customer experience, and evaluate the effectiveness of our marketing.
Ring ensures that service providers’ use of the data provided is contractually limited to appropriate purposes such as performing these services on our behalf and not for other purposes."
Ring is covering itself with its agreement there, which you do have to use in order to use its hardware devices. If nothing else it's a timely reminder to keep a close eye on your data security, including any agreements you may have blithely clicked on without fully reading.