Airbnb is banning indoor security cameras inside its listings

Airbnb is banning the use of indoor security cameras in all of its listings, the company announced on Monday. Previously, Airbnb has allowed hosts to have indoor security cameras in common areas, such as hallways and living rooms, as long as they disclosed them on their listing page and did not place them in bathrooms and areas where guests sleep.

In a blog post, the company said it is now banning indoor security cameras “regardless of their location, purpose or prior disclosure.” Airbnb says a majority of the listings on its platform don’t report having an indoor security camera, and that the update will only impact “a smaller subset of listings.” The change comes after numerous reports of guests finding hidden cameras in their rentals. The update won’t get rid of the issue of hidden cameras, as it targets rule-abiding hosts.

Airbnb is also introducing new rules for outdoor security cameras and noise-decibel monitors. Hosts will be required to disclose the presence and location of outdoor cameras before guests book. Hosts can’t use outdoor cameras to monitor indoor spaces and aren’t allowed to place them in private outdoor areas like an enclosed outdoor shower or sauna.

Hosts also need to disclose the use of noise-decibel monitors, which are used to determine if a prohibited party is going on, in common spaces of their listings. Airbnb permanently banned parties at all of its listings back in 2020.

“Our goal was to create new, clear rules that provide our community with greater clarity about what to expect on Airbnb,” Juniper Downs, Airbnb’s head of community policy and partnerships, said in the company’s blog post. “These changes were made in consultation with our guests, Hosts and privacy experts, and we’ll continue to seek feedback to help ensure our policies work for our global community.”

The new policy goes into effect on April 30. If a host breaks the new rules and a guest reports the presence of a camera, Airbnb will investigate and possibly remove the listing or account from the platform.


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