It seems that although the acquisition of the American group last year raises some controversy, it has a chance to actually contribute to the safety of its users.
We remind you that Ring is a home security and other smart solutions company that Amazon bought for $ 1.2-1.8 billion last year (the exact amount was not officially provided). However, this one was established in 2013, when it successfully funded its doorbot through crowdfunding – it managed to collect 364 thousand. USD, which is 250 thousand more than planned. And although some people think that the company’s solutions are used for surveillance rather than caring for the good of the owners, Ring is doing great, constantly expanding its reach web alpha.
Earlier this month, it got loud again, all due to the information that Amazon is going to provide the police with access to recordings recorded by cameras mounted on Ring devices. This aroused the opposition of many people, but the company defended its practices, explaining that this option is only possible after a legal and justified call from specific services. Furthermore, police argued that users know what they are saying and that this is in no way a violation of the 4th amendment to the US Constitution.
Now we are learning from Ring himself that they have already signed appropriate agreements for sharing video recordings with over 400 police units throughout the United States. The Amazon-owned company calls it the “new neighborhood watch,” although the Washington Post expert claims it would be more appropriate to describe “an interesting workaround to create a completely new surveillance network.” And it is hardly surprising, because so far there are no benefits for users of these systems, but only the police and Ring itself, which increases its range and importance.
To be more precise, this partnership allows the police to submit video requests recorded by Ring devices at a specific time and place, whenever it needs help in the investigation. Fortunately, there is no question of access to live image, and users are to be informed each time the services gain access to Neighbors Portal through a dedicated application. What’s more, they themselves can reportedly report crimes and cooperate with the police through the mutual flow of information about violations of law and security events. Is it enough for controversial opinions to disappear? In no case, because although everything is explained by security reasons, in practice we are actually dealing with a huge face recognition and surveillance system, which carries the risk of abuse and leakage of private information.