Woman files lawsuit over hidden camera in Airbnb rental
IRVINE, Calif. — A German woman is suing Airbnb after finding a hidden camera in the California home she rented out for a month.
According to Mashable, Edith Schumacher discovered the hidden camera under a pile of candles just three days into her stay.
Schumacher has since hired an attorney and filed a lawsuit against Airbnb, for fear that nude footage of her, as well as private conversations, may end up online.
The lawsuit alleges negligence against Airbnb, and invasion of privacy and emotional distress against the owners of the rental, according to Mashable.
Airbnb’s website notes that installing surveillance devices could violate the law in certain areas.
“We expect hosts to respect their guests’ privacy. Although we can’t provide you with specific legal advice, the use of surveillance equipment may violate the law in your jurisdiction. Notify your guests about any security cameras or other surveillance devices at or around your listing and get consent where required.”
California has a two-party consent law, which means that a conversation in which both parties don’t know about a recording is illegal.
A spokesman for Airbnb told Mashable:
“Though we do not comment on pending litigation we will defend it vigorously. Airbnb takes privacy issues extremely seriously. All hosts must certify that they comply with all applicable laws in their locations and are of course expected to respect the privacy of their guests. Airbnb warns hosts to fully disclose whether there are security cameras or other surveillance equipment at or around the listing and to get consent where required.”