Tell me if it strikes a chord with you. Do you feel anxious or violated about your neighbor’s security camera pointed at your house? Or wonder if your neighbor can record you on your property?
With the popularity of residence security cameras, the disputes between camera owners and their neighbors have also arisen over privacy issues.
So, can your neighbor’s security camera record your yard or property legally? What are the privacy laws concerning neighbor’s security camera aimed at your house?
Or if you plan to install a security camera around your house, can you point your security camera at your neighbor’s house?
By the time you’re done reading this post, you’ll have all the answers to the above questions.
- When It Is Legal to Have IP Cameras Pointed at Your House
- When It Is Not Legal to Install IP Cameras Aimed at Your House
- What to Do with Your Neighbor’s Cameras Pointed at Your Property
- What to Look Out for If You Plan to Install Outdoor Security Cameras
Essentially, the legality of your neighbor’s security camera overlooking your property depends on what the camera is used for, what acts it is capturing and what your neighbor is doing with the video footage.
In the following scenarios, your neighbor can have security cameras pointed at your house legally:
#1. Your Neighbor’s Security Camera Aimed at Your House Is Indeed Capturing a Broad Area
As the property owners, your neighbors are entitled to install security cameras in and around their house to stop burglars from tatgerting their home.
And you have the right to do so as well.
So if your neighbor places an IP camera for security purpose and it happens to capture your front door, driveway or yard which are invisible from public areas, you can’t press charges against your neighbor as you have no expectation of privacy outdoors.
Chances are that your driveway or yard is the collateral background in a legitimate monitoring of your neighbor’s property. Just as the home security camera laws in California says,
“There are no restrictions, for a private person to have video surveillance cameras around their property for the purposes of security.”
“If your cameras are located on your property in plain view, are not in a private place, and do not violate any state or federal laws, it would appear they would be lawful.”
Though video surveillance of your neighbor’s security camera in public areas is allowed without warning or consent, audio recording generally requires consent from at least one side in most states.
#2. The Footage of Neighbor’s Security Cameras Overlooking Your Property is in Lawful Use
How your neighbor deals with the footage of his security camera pointed at your house, is another factor your need to consider.
As long as the recorded videos don’t infringe on your privacy and are for lawful purpose only (like monitoring suspects or prevent package thefts at the front door), it is legal for your neighbor to point a security camera at your property in plain view.
In this video below, a car accident was captured by the Reolink security camera RLC-410 pointed at the driveway. If there was a “dispute” between the victims, this video would help the police and insurance company to draw the conclusions.
PoE Bullet IP Security Camera with Audio
5MP/4MP Super HD; Outdoor/Indoor Protection; 100ft Infrared Night Vision; Audio Recording; Mobile Remote Access & Control.
There are also exceptions in which your neighbor can’t install security cameras aimed at your house.
#1. Your Neighbor’s Security Cameras Point at Your House Where You Have Expectation of Privacy
Though your neighbor can record you on your property in plain sight, things are different for the places where you have a reasonable expectation of privacy, such as your bathroom, bedroom, restrooms, locker rooms, changing/dressing rooms, etc.
According to the residence security camera laws, your neighbor might invite legal trouble in if he points security cameras at areas where you couldn’t view without physically entering the premises.
Here is what the home security camera laws in California says:
Installation or use of any device for photographing, observing or overhearing events, or sounds, in a private place without permission of the people photographed or observed is against the law.
#2. The Videos of Your Neighbor’s Security Cameras Are Misused
Worse yet, the perverted neighbors may point security cameras at your children’s bedrooms to be a high-tech peeping Tom.
And some even post the video footage recording your activities on the social media.
Such wrongful application of home security cameras, without any doubt, is illegal and you can ask for the interference of law enforcement and claim harassment.
Feel uncomfortable and nerve-wrecking about your neighbor’s security camera pointed at your house/property?
Instead of using illegal ways to the jam the surveillance, which would only make the matter become worse, below are some practical tips you can adopt after you find your neighbor recording you on your property.
The first golden rule is to talk with your neighbor, in a good manner.
Tell him/her how you feel about the security camera aimed at your house (they may be unaware of the fact) and ask with politeness if it is possible to adjust the viewing angle of the camera.
Another feasible way to block your neighbor’s security cameras overlooking your property is to plant grown trees or fences as buffers, so as to blind the camera’s field of view.
In case that your neighbor’s security camera pointed at your house has invaded your privacy and your talk also ends up in failure, the best solution, would be contacting the local police and contacting your attorney to file a lawsuit.
Editor’s Tip: Check out more useful tips about how to block your neighbor’s security cameras.
“Can I point my security camera at my neighbor’s house?”
You should have got the answer after reading the above parts.
But to avoid possible disputes caused by your use of security cameras, here are some helpful tips you’d better keep in mind before installing your camera.
- Stand in your neighbors’ shoes and avoid pointing your security cameras at places where they have expectation of privacy.
- Inform your neighbor of your use of security cameras and explain to them about your purpose to avoid misunderstandings.
- Make sure the surveillance camera is installed properly.
- Ensure the footage of your security cameras is for security purpose only and protect the videos from falling into the wrong hands.
Whether you have a neighbors’ security camera pointed at your house in UK, Ireland, Scotland, California, Florida, Michigan or other places, the above information also applies for your situation.
And if you need any further help about your neighbor’s security cameras pointed at your house, please feel free to leave your comment below and we’d love to help.
①Quora: My neighbor has a security camera pointed directly at my front door. Is this legal or do I have the right to be annoyed?
②Reddit: Neighbors installed a security camera pointing into my garage. Anyone knows the laws around this?
③Daycare: Neighbors have surveillance camera pointed in my back yard, what should I do?
④Free advice: Neighbor has a security camera pointing at my daughter’s window. Is this legal?
⑤ City-Data Forum: My neighbor’s security camera overlooking my property records everything of my backyard activities and I feel like I have no privacy at all. Any tips?