Ring recently announced plans to offer end-to-end encryption (E2EE) for most of its smart security cameras. The protocol prevents anyone, including hackers, law enforcement, or Ring itself, from accessing your videos. After just a few months in beta, Ring E2E is now available to all U.S. users and is currently rolling out to devices globally.
Smart camera manufacturers are never free from controversy, but Ring found itself entrenched in scandals throughout 2019 and 2020 for violating user privacy, providing video footage to police without asking users first, and leaving devices vulnerable to hackers. ‘
At one point, we actually suggested that readers avoid Ring for these reasons, but recent changes to device security and Ring’s relationship with law enforcement led us to reverse our decision. Proper E2EE is definitely a factor in this equation, and we’re glad to see it exit beta so quickly.
Unfortunately, E2EE doesn’t work with Ring’s battery-powered video doorbells and cameras. We’ll list the Ring camera models that are compatible with E2EE below:
- Ring Video Doorbell Pro
- Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2
- Ring Video Doorbell Elite
- Ring Video Doorbell Wired
- Ring Spotlight Cam Wired
- Ring Spotlight Cam Mount
- Stick Up Cam Elite (2nd Gen)
- Stick Up Cam Wired (2nd Gen)
- Indoor Cam
- Ring Floodlight Cam (1st Gen)
- Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Pro
- Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Plus
- Ring Stick Up Cam Plug-In (3rd Gen)
To set up E2EE, open your Ring app and go to the Control Center. Then, tap Video Encryption, go to the Advanced Settings, and find Video End-to-End Encryption. You should see a button that says “Get Started.” Press it, and follow the instructions—Ring will make you set up a passphrase and run through some important info.
Along with E2EE, Ring now supports authenticator apps (such as Google Authenticator) to provide more security on top of 2FA. The Ring and Neighbors apps are also gaining CAPTCHA to deter bots from logging into accounts, a feature that seems a bit overdue.
If that’s not enough, Ring has announced plans to launch a self-service “transfer” platform, which should allow users to safely wipe and sell their Ring products without calling Customer Support. This should sever the connection between your old device and your personal info, preventing its new owners from breaching your privacy.