Ring [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8], a company owned by Amazon, settled with the FTC in 2023 over privacy violations [2] [6], agreeing to pay over $5.6 million in refunds to consumers [1] [7] [8].


The FTC accused Ring of allowing employees and contractors to access private videos without consent [1] [4] [5] [7] [8], leading to unauthorized access to accounts [5] [6], cameras [1] [2] [4] [5] [7] [8], and videos for training algorithms and other purposes [8]. Ring failed to notify and obtain consent from customers regarding the use of security video footage for training purposes until 2018 [3]. The FTC found that Ring had failed to restrict access to videos [2] [3], gain user consent [3], and implement security safeguards [2] [3], resulting in “egregious violations of users’ privacy.” Ring attributed some security breaches to bad actors using stolen credentials from other companies. As part of the settlement [1] [4], Ring must delete unlawfully obtained content [1] [4] [6] [7] [8], enhance security measures [1] [4] [6] [8], and pay a fine [1] [4], with refunds going to eligible customers through 117,044 PayPal payments based on the type of Ring device used during the period when unauthorized users could have accessed video footage [3]. Amazon [2] [5] [6], which acquired Ring [5], disagreed with the FTC’s claims but expressed a desire to move past the issue [5]. Ring also implemented measures to protect affected accounts and announced it would no longer allow police departments to request doorbell camera footage from users [1], ending a controversial feature [1]. Additionally, Ring was charged with failing to implement adequate security measures [4], resulting in hackers gaining control of customer accounts and videos [4] [8]. End-to-end encryption is being rolled out to improve privacy [2].


The settlement with the FTC highlights the importance of protecting user privacy and implementing robust security measures. Ring’s commitment to enhancing security and implementing end-to-end encryption is a step in the right direction to prevent future privacy violations. The decision to no longer allow police departments to request doorbell camera footage also demonstrates a commitment to user privacy and data protection. Moving forward, it is crucial for companies like Ring to prioritize user privacy and security to maintain consumer trust and confidence.


[1] https://apnews.com/article/ring-doorbell-camera-settlement-ftc-payments-658a3bae14c4744cf449932099dc4404
[2] https://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/ring-pay-out-56m-dollars-refunds/
[3] https://www.darkreading.com/cyber-risk/ftc-issues-5-6m-in-refunds-to-customers-after-ring-privacy-settlement
[4] https://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/ftc-sends-56-million-refunds-ring-customers-part-109627889
[5] https://www.nbcnews.com/business/consumer/ring-camera-refund-security-lapse-how-much-how-to-claim-rcna149421
[6] https://www.techspot.com/news/102774-ftc-distributes-56-million-refunds-ring-customers-privacy.html
[7] https://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/national-international/ftc-sends-refunds-ring-customers-video-privacy-settlement/5354701/
[8] https://hosted.ap.org/semissourian/article/658a3bae14c4744cf449932099dc4404/ftc-sends-56-million-refunds-ring-customers-part-video