Eufy Video Smart Lock

Warning: *privacy not included with this product

Eufy Video Smart Lock

Review date: Nov. 9, 2022

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Mozilla says

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People voted: Not creepy

There are more ways to open Eufy's Smart Video Lock than you can shake a stick at. There's opening it with the app over WiFi from just about anywhere. There's using your fingerprint, or a keypad, or a real key. Heck, you can even ask Alexa to open the door for you. All this, plus a video camera to see those kids play ding, dong, ditch at your front door. This lock really does have it all. Well, maybe not the greatest promise to protect your privacy ever, although, it does have some good privacy features.

What could happen if something goes wrong?

Smart locks are one of those connected devices that seem to worry lots of people. The pros: They offer a lot of convenience with multiple ways to unlock the door to your home, a way to track who comes and goes from your home, they can allow you give out a keypad number to people like a babysitter and then revoke that when they no longer need access, and they can help you make sure you locked your front door when your anxiety kicks in on vacation. The cons: They can be vulnerable to any number of things such as power outages, lost or compromised phones, ransomware attacks on the company who made your lock, product security vulnerabilities, WiFi and/or Bluetooth vulnerabilities, home hub vulnerabilities, bad software updates, data leaks, and more.

With all that said, how does Eufy’s Smart Video Lock stack up? This lock is a mix of video doorbell plus WiFi//Keypad/Fingerprint/Key smart lock. So, there are lots of ways to open it. It can be controlled from just about anywhere with the Eufy Security app. And that fingerprint data of yours is stored locally on the device rather than on the internet in the cloud where it could be more vulnerable, which is great. It’s also great we found no known security breaches of Eufy’s smart locks.

Unfortunately, Eufy has had some significant security vulnerabilities with their security cameras. In June 2022, security experts foundthree 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 seems to have stepped up and immediately fixed these bugs and to get them out to their users quickly.

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 smart locks, it’s a good reminder that software updates can go wrong, which wouldn’t be good for your smart lock.

On the privacy front, Eufy’s privacy policy says they can collect a good deal of personal information on you -- things like name, email, gender, birth date, location, device information, and more. And while Eufy says they don’t sell your personal information -- which is good -- they say they can use that information to show you ads from them and third party advertisers, which isn’t so good (but also pretty standard on the internet these days). They also say they can collect personal information on you from third parties who provide it to them, such as law enforcement authorities. This worries us a bit because the way that line in their privacy policy is written is rather vague and seems like it could leave open the possibility they could collect information on users from a variety of third parties, for example, data brokers.

What’s the worst that could happen? Well, it is a smart lock that can be unlocked with an app over WiFi, with your phone through Bluetooth if you’re up to 30 feet away, with your fingerprint, with a keypad, and with an actual key. That’s a lot of ways to open a door. Which potentially means there are more ways for your door to be vulnerable to opening. At least you’ve got that camera there recording if someone comes up with your phone (or chopped off finger) and tries to open your door. Hopefully there will be no finger chopping! Or phone hacking though. Both those would be bad.

Tips to protect yourself

  • Check out tips to ensure your smart lock safety
  • Maintain a strong door
  • Choose a secure access code
  • Set up two-factor authentication
  • 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.
mobile Privacy warning Security A.I.

Can it snoop on me? information

Camera

Device: No

App: No

Microphone

Device: No

App: No

Tracks location

Device: No

App: Yes

What can be used to sign up?

What data does the company collect?

How does the company use this data?

We ding this product for sharing personal data for advertisement and for combining users' data with data from third parties.

Eufy does not sell data. However, they share personal identifiers for advertisement purposes: "We do not Sell any personal information to third parties. In particular, we do not Sell the personal information of minors under 16 years of age. In the preceding 12 months, we have disclosed the following categories of personal information to the following categories of recipients: [...] Advertising networks, data analytics providers. - Personal Identifiers."

Eufy also combine users' data with data obtained from third parties: "We collect or obtain Personal Data from third parties who provide it to us (e.g., credit reference agencies; law enforcement authorities; etc.)."

How can you control your data?

We ding this product because it is not clear all users have the same rights to access and delete their data. Eufy specifically mentions the right to delete data only for users based in California.

"Subject to applicable law, you may have the following rights regarding the Processing of your Relevant Personal Data...."

Data retention policies for Eufy are rather confusing, however Eufy does promise to delete or anonymised data once they do not need it any more:
"Once the periods in paragraphs (1), (2) and (3) above, each to the extent applicable, have concluded, we will either:
- permanently delete or destroy the relevant Personal Data; or
- anonymize the relevant Personal Data."

What is the company’s known track record of protecting users’ data?

Average

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

Our Sites, products, or services are not directed to children under the age of 13. As a result, our Sites, products, or services do not request or knowingly collect personal information from individuals under the age of 13. If you are not 13 or older, you should not visit or use our Sites, products, or services .

Can this product be used offline?

Yes

User-friendly privacy information?

Yes

Structured and concise

Links to privacy information

Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards? information

Yes

Encryption

Yes

Strong password

Yes

Security updates

Yes

Manages vulnerabilities

Yes

Privacy policy

Yes

Does the product use AI? information

Yes

Is this AI untrustworthy?

Can’t Determine

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?

Can’t Determine

Does the user have control over the AI features?

Yes

*privacy not included

Dive Deeper

  • Here’s Anker’s apology after 712 Eufy customers had camera feeds exposed to strangers
    The Verge
  • Eufy says software 'bug' that exposed users' video footage to strangers has been fixed
    CNET
  • Anker’s Eufy division pledges to bolster security following privacy snafu, apologizes again
    TechHive
  • Huge Eufy privacy breach shows live and recorded cam feeds to strangers
    9to5Mac
  • Eufy security cameras hit with bug giving access to users feeds
    Poc Network

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