Ring does not fight crime, say cops in 8 states whose PDs partnered with Amazon-owned home surveillance

There is very little evidence that Ring reduces crime. Hundreds of police departments have signed agreements with Amazon-owned Ring to obtain access to the home surveillance camera footage. Interviews with many of them, in 8 different states, show little to no evidence that Ring actually deters criminal activity.

"We don't have any research data showing that Ring has a correlation to a reduction," Jodee Reyes, a spokeswoman for the Carlsbad Police Department near San Diego told NBC News.

"Our residential burglary rate began decreasing before Ring gave us access to their portal. There are more than likely many factors that have led to this decrease."

From reporting by Cyrus Farivar:

Since 2018, Ring has signed up more than 800 law enforcement agencies as "partners," offering them access to video footage recorded by its millions of customers' internet-connected cameras across the U.S. through an app called Neighbors.

Ring promises to "make neighborhoods safer" by deterring and helping to solve crimes, citing its own research that says an installation of its doorbell cameras reduces burglaries by more than 50 percent. But an NBC News Investigation has found β€” after interviews with 40 law enforcement agencies in eight states that have partnered with Ring for at least three months β€” that there is little concrete evidence to support the claim.

Three agencies said the ease with which the public can share Ring videos means officers spend time reviewing clips of non-criminal issues such as racoons and petty disagreements between neighbors. Others noted that the flood of footage generated by Ring cameras rarely led to positive identifications of suspects, let alone arrests.

Thirteen of the 40 jurisdictions reached, including Winter Park, said they had made zero arrests as a result of Ring footage. Thirteen were able to confirm arrests made after reviewing Ring footage, while two offered estimates. The rest, including large cities like Phoenix, Miami, and Kansas City, Missouri, said that they don't know how many arrests had been made as a result of their relationship with Ring β€” and therefore could not evaluate its effectiveness β€” even though they had been working with the company for well over a year.

Read more:
Cute videos, but little evidence: Police say Amazon Ring isn't much of a crime fighter

(Cyrus Farivar, nbcnews.com, Feb. 15, 2020)