Security cameras from manufacturer Anker Eufy came under fire at the end of November 2022 because, contrary to the manufacturer’s promise, they transmitted facial data to the Internet without consent. Clammy, the manufacturer has now removed this privacy promise apparently from the website.
Anchor Eufy removes references to local data storage
In late November 2022, security researcher Paul Moore uncovered a critical data and security vulnerability in the Anker Eufy Doorbell Dual. The security camera transmitted, unsolicited and without consent, users’ facial data to the Internet. And that, although one boasted of a local data storage.
A statement from the manufacturer said when asked:
[…]Although our eufy Security app offers users the option to choose between text and thumbnail-based push notifications from the start, we did not make it clear enough that when thumbnail notifications are selected, the thumbnails are briefly hosted in the cloud.
This lack of communication was an oversight on our part and we sincerely apologize for this error.”
As The Verge magazine now reports, the manufacturer has removed a total of ten security promises from product websites as of December 08. When comparing the former version of the website and the new variant, some adjustments directly catch the eye.
Security notices removed
For example, the notice “Your recorded data is kept private and stored locally. With military-grade encryption. And transmitted to them and only them,” has completely disappeared.
Other statements such as “For your eyes only,” and many more are also no longer on the updated websites. Also removed was a lengthy paragraph that indicated that videos may only be shared with law enforcement agencies with the users’ consent.
This apparently means that it is now possible for Anker Eufy security cameras to share this data with police. Even without explicit consent. That caused a stir previously with Amazon subsidiary Ring in July 2022.
However, the adaptation of the website of Anker Eufy has not only deleted important safety instructions or promises. On the other hand, it now makes it clearer that customers can access their recorded footage via a web portal and that (optionally) they can back up video clips to the cloud.
In addition, they make it clear that “their video recordings cannot be viewed, shared or used by Eufy for other purposes”.