Warning: *privacy not included with this product
Eufy's line of robot vacuums include some with laser navigation, some with "smart path navigation" and then there is the "bounce series," which maybe just kinda bounces off of stuff. Regardless, Eufy lets you get a robot vacuum as smart or dumb as you want. Want one to map your home and work when and where you schedule it. Done. Want one that doesn’t even have WiFi and just goes about the business of vacuuming with the push of a button. Done. As for Eufy's privacy policies, well, they do raise a few red flags. Good thing you've got that dumb, no-WiFi option if you want!
What could happen if something goes wrong?
Robot vacuums from Eufy come with features like laser navigation, AI mapping technology, and sensors to help avoid obstacles. Fortunately, none of Eufy’s robot vacuums seem to come with built-in cameras (yet, at least), which is good. Sensors are generally a safer bet than cameras in your home. Most of Eufy’s robot vacuums do connect to WiFi and share some data back to Eufy through the Eufy Clean app. Consumer Reports found that Eufy lacked good publicly available information about what data their robot vacuums collects. It would be good to know exactly what data their robot vacuums collect.
It’s great we found no known security breaches of Eufy’s robot vacuums. Unfortunately, Eufy has had some significant security vulnerabilities with their security cameras. In June 2022, security experts found three security vulnerabilities in Eufy's Homebase 2 video storage and management device that could have allowed hackers to take control of the hub, control it remotely, or steal video footage. Eufy/Anker developed fixes for these security vulnerabilities and released them to users in a timely manner. And in May 2021, Eufy was forced to apologize for a bug that exposed the camera feeds of 712 users to strangers. Eufy said the glitch happened during a software update and “users were able to access video feeds from other users’ cameras.” Eufy said in a statement the glitch was fixed an hour after it was discovered.
So, the bad news is, Eufy’s security cameras have had some serious security issues. The good news is, Eufy as a company seems to have stepped up and immediately fixed these bugs and to get the updates out to their users quickly. While these security oopsies happened to their video cameras, not their robot vacuums, it’s a good reminder that bugs happen and software updates can go wrong, which wouldn’t be good for your robot vacuum (although, you’re probably less vulnerable to a bug in your robot vacuum than your security camera or smart lock).
What’s the worst that could happen? Well, it’s always possible someone could hack your WiFi and control your robot vacuum, sending it around your home mapping things and learning all about where your tables and chairs are. One way around this, you could always buy Eufy’s “dumb” robot vacuum, the RoboVac 11S, that doesn’t connect to WiFi at all. Sometimes dumb is good.
Tips to protect yourself
- Use two-factor authentication
- Limit your robot vacuum's data sharing
- Use strong passwords
- Keep your robot vacuum's firmware updated
- Do not sign up with third-party accounts. Better just log in with email and strong password.
- Chose a strong password! You may use a password control tool like 1Password, KeePass etc
- Use your device privacy controls to limit access to your personal information via app (do not give access to your camera, microphone, images, location unless neccessary)
- Keep your app regularly updated
- Limit ad tracking via your device (eg on iPhone go to Privacy -> Advertising -> Limit ad tracking) and biggest ad networks (for Google, go to Google account and turn off ad personalization)
- Request your data be deleted once you stop using the app. Simply deleting an app from your device usually does not erase your personal data.
- When starting a sign-up, do not agree to tracking of your data if possible.
Device: Can’t Determine
What can be used to sign up?
What data does the company collect?
Name, email address
How does the company use this data?
How can you control your data?
What is the company’s known track record of protecting users’ data?
In June 2022, three security vulnerabilities were found in Eufy's Homebase 2 video storage and management device that could have allowed hackers to take control of the hub, control it remotely, or steal video footage. Eufy/Anker developed fixes for these secruity vulnerabilities and released them to users in a timely manner.
In May 2021, Eufy was forced to apologize for a bug that exposed the camera feeds of 712 users to strangers. Eufy said the glitch happened during a software update and “users were able to access video feeds from other users’ cameras.” Eufy said in a statement the glitch was fixed an hour after it was discovered.
Child Privacy Information
Can this product be used offline?
User-friendly privacy information?
Structured and concise
Links to privacy information
Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards?
Is this AI untrustworthy?
What kind of decisions does the AI make about you or for you?
The built-in AI reduces the number of false alerts you receive by intelligently differentiating people from objects. It has features like pet detection, and even crying detection.
Is the company transparent about how the AI works?
Does the user have control over the AI features?
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