New security camera policy is unreasonable

Level 8
Boston, MA

New security camera policy is unreasonable

I presume all hosts received an email from Airbnb about security cameras, in which it says, "You’re not allowed to have cameras that monitor indoor spaces." That is completely unfair. The basic Abode security system that I have has a motion sensor with a camera that takes a snapshot if the sensor is triggered when the alarm is on, to get a picture of who or what is moving in the hallway. I disclose this in my listing, and I have a small curtain that guests can pull to cover the camera if they are concerned about privacy. Airbnb is essentially forcing me to get a different security system. How are other hosts dealing with this?

213 Replies 213

make sense!

Level 6
Fort Lauderdale, FL

Hello Conrad and others. I would say the policy is simply to ensure that hosts are respectful to guests' privacy. I have never had indoor cameras, but had listings back in LA that I used to share with strangers when I first started hosting in LA. If at any point I was to be concerned about my own privacy and security to have to monitor the shared space, that's when I would question whether hosting in a privacy room was for me. While hosting in an entire listing, guests deserve all the privacy they need and I cannot imagine how monitoring indoor spaces would be acceptable. The place I host is almost like a treehouse and I would not even point the camera towards the boat even if it is outdoors, because it would breach people's privacy. All I need to monitor is who enters the boat going up the ramp before even reaching the listing. I believe airbnb should not be like a hotel because if guests book an entire place, they deserve privacy. 

It's rather okay if one is renting full house because it is left to the guests how they use it but for those who rent rooms and live in the house themselves too, safety and security is top important. However, even then how do one ensure the genuineness of the guest and other aspects. I am sure no one is putting cameras in the bedrooms / bathrooms which faulters privacy. Shared spaces , yes and the should be no harm in that as I opine and many others. Thanks  

Level 7
England, United Kingdom

It is not just about checking what the guests are doing, but more about safety, especially if you are a live in host and house sharing with strangers,  because that's what guests are.  And why Airbnb thinks, I should jeopardise my own safety, for its selfish end is beyond me. 

I will be delisting come 30th of April,. Airbnb can go to Hell as far as I am concerned. I will not remove my cameras 

There are various use cases for having an indoor camera. Many people here have described their situation of sharing a room (and common areas) in the house that they live in. My situation is different, but I would content still valid: A property owner needs to be able to protect their property against burglary when no on is staying there. Many alarm systems, including mine, have a camera facing the one or two door entrances that will be triggered if the alarm is on and someone breaks in. The camera is never used when guests are there because I don't set the alarm when guests are there. And if guests want to be extra sure of their privacy, I have a sign and instructions for putting a towel over the camera (my cleaning person would then take it off during changeovers). Property owners need to be able to protect their property with indoor cameras that are only potentially used between guest rentals.

Rose there are already statutes on the books that protects a person's right to privacy.  A guest would not.need to complain to Airbnb; they could call the police.  But in a shared kitchen, gym or common hallway there is no right to privacy because they are public places.  A guest may be using the shared kitchen but another guest who they don't know from Adam or the host could pop in another second.  There is no expectation of privacy.

Level 4
Manchester, United Kingdom

Airbnb have now unlisted my listing because I have not agreed to the new t&c concerning the camera rule change. My calendar is still visible but on setting it says unlisted when I click to list it says you must accept new terms before you can relist.

i thought the notice period and change was from 30th April?


have others accepted the new terms or refusing to as I am? If you are have you been delisted early too?

Level 4
Albany, NY

Yes, it is official no indoor cameras are allowed even in your own private spaces as a home share host. I will not put myself, family, guests and my house at risk. I will no longer be a host on Airbnb. there is other short-term platforms. This is dangerous for all home share hosts.



Just curious, what other short-term platforms allow for home share? 

There are many but according to me at least Airbnb do verify bot the host and the guest which other do not although they do not stand guarantee for the guest who books and check-in. That has to be taken care by the host. To be sure I normally ask for ID proof as soon as booking is confirmed and check if the ID is genuine. So in some way Airbnb is better. 

Rentals @ tripadvisor spare room , Craigslist, Furnished Finders,  Houfy, and a good ole fashioned room for rent sign in front of your house

And Homestay.

Another interesting point...


A few bad apples have been using hidden cameras to spy on guests - I imagine this is how it all started. We honest hosts disclose all our cameras, provide a means to deactivate and shroud the cameras etc ...but that has not been good enough for ABNB.


What makes ABNB think that a simple "ruling" is going to stop those nefarious hosts from this kind of activity, using concealed cameras? After all if they are concealed to start with then they're not going to acknowledge that they are even there and present?


A bit like using gun permits as a weapon against criminals, who never have permits.


Badly thought out, but unless they see a pushback I feel they will go ahead with this.


Regardless, I just dumped all my stock in ABNB ahead of this date.

Level 8
Boston, MA

I have unlisted my property, and hope many of you do the same, today. Airbnb needs to change their ridiculous camera policy.

I just closed off my calendar, made a video and listed my room spaces on other housing sites. Good luck, my fellow hosts.