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If you’re considering a home security network complete with security cameras, then you might be worried that they’re an invasion of privacy. While you can control the cameras if you own them, some have professional monitoring or might require professional installation. Plus, can security cameras work against you if you catch someone breaking into your home or stealing from you? You might want to know if your privacy and those around you are being threatened.
Let’s look into this and see why home security cameras aren’t an invasion of privacy. Please note that this article in no way constitutes legal advice. Contact your lawyer as they can provide the information you are looking for in that case.
What is an Invasion of Privacy?
Security cameras can be an invasion of privacy if they are placed in the wrong areas. This comes up more businesses monitoring employees and customers, but there are public and private spaces. A public space would be around offices, outside, or other areas where people meet communally.
In this case, recording someone in these spaces is typically not a problem and is legal. While there can be challenges to this of course, it is mostly recognized that public spaces can be recorded with security cameras.
Private spaces are something different. These would be spaces where someone would expect privacy, such as restrooms, dressing rooms, lockers, showers, and so on. Things are a little looser if you’re the one installing the security cameras in your own home.
If someone else were recording inside your home, then obviously it’d be an invasion of privacy. However, you can install the cameras inside your own home with no issue. It’d still be best to record only more “public” rooms (family room, dining room, etc) as recording someone in the bathroom or another private room could be an issue.
Looking for Crime
Some people might be worried about installing security cameras in or around their home because they don’t want to be watched, or friends might be worried that they are being watched whenever they come over.
The truth is that you’ll very rarely review footage unless a crime or something noteworthy happens. You’re busy and likely don’t have enough time to review all the footage your camera records. You’ll only be checking it if you get a notification (like with the Arlo security cameras), or if you notice something happened on your property (like a broken window or something being missing).
You’re not trying to invade the privacy of those around you. Instead, you’re just looking to keep yourself protected if anything does happen. This footage can help prove who is committing crimes on your property, which could be the leverage you need to win a case.
Effective Crime Prevention
While security cameras can’t reduce crime 100%, the truth is that they are quite effective at deterring someone from initiating a crime. Statistics vary based on what source you’re checking, but around 50% of criminals said they would not commit a crime if a camera is present. The risks of getting caught go up if they are captured by the camera.
That doesn’t sound like an invasion of privacy for you, does it? Instead, you’re just using it to keep yourself, your family, and your home safe.
Many security cameras can record audio, it’s not like this is futuristic technology. Nearly every device can record audio at this point (tablets, Roku, phones, and so much more), so it’s not surprising that security cameras can record audio.
However, surprisingly enough, this is considered to an even bigger invasion of privacy than video recording! This is another reason why security cameras are best in public rather than private spaces.
In this case, it might be best to tell your friends and family members that the cameras can record audio. You don’t want any hurt feelings if they say something private that they don’t want you to hear. At the same time, this audio recording can be beneficial if criminals are coming to your door.
You’ll be able to record what they’re saying and, equally importantly, what they sound like. If they are wearing masks, then their voice might be what gives away their identity.
So, are security cameras an invasion of privacy? They can be if used inappropriately. If you place them in private spaces like bathrooms, then yes, they could be an invasion of privacy even if you’re doing it in your own home (this is especially true if you have company over).
But they are perfectly fine if they are installed in public rooms like the family room or dining room, and just as fine recording your yard and around your home. If you want to improve security around your home, then consider installing security cameras like the Arlo Pro 4.