Ring camera lawsuit: customers to receive settlement funds

Close-up of Ring doorbell, equipped with a camera and machine learning capabilities, installed outside a home in the Marina Del Rey neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, October 21, 2018. (Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

Ring customers could receive a refund after the company settled a lawsuit, according to the Federal Trade Commission. 

The FTC said the refunds will total more than $5.6 million. The lawsuit settlement involved charges that Ring allowed employees and contractors to access consumers’ private videos all while failing to implement security protections.

The government said that enabled hackers to gain control of consumers’ accounts, cameras, and videos.

In a May 2023 complaint, the FTC said Ring  "deceived its customers by failing to restrict employees’ and contractors’ access to its customers’ videos, using its customer videos to train algorithms without consent, and failing to implement security safeguards. These practices led to egregious violations of users’ privacy."

Last year, Amazon agreed to pay over $30 million to settle two lawsuits filed against the retail giant, alleging privacy violations with its Alexa voice assistant and Ring doorbell camera.

The FTC said it will send  117,044 PayPal payments to eligible consumers who had certain types of Ring devices includin  indoor cameras during the time frame where the deception took place. 

Consumers will have 30 days to redeem their payments. 

"We take our responsibility to protect our customers’ privacy and security extremely seriously, and believe it’s important to provide context in relation to this settlement," Ring said in a 2023 statement. "We want our customers to know that the FTC complaint draws on matters that Ring promptly addressed on its own, well before the FTC began its inquiry; mischaracterizes our security practices; and ignores the many protections we have in place for our customers. While we disagree with the FTC’s allegations and deny violating the law, this settlement resolves this matter so we can focus on innovating on behalf of our customers."

This story was reported from Los Angeles.