Another case of a peeping Airbnb host was discovered by shocked guests, this time in Taiwan.
A Chinese couple staying at an Airbnb accommodation in Kaohsiung, Taiwan found two hidden cameras in their rooms back in February, according to AsiaOne.
Similar to the cameras discovered at an Airbnb accomodation in Japan, the cameras in Taiwan were found hidden inside fake smoke detectors.
The woman, identified only by her surname Liu, revealed in a recent interview that it was her boyfriend who had a weird feeling they were being watched in their bedroom. Liu said that she didn’t believe him at first, but was shocked to find the hidden cameras after he convinced her to check the smoke detectors.
Upon further investigation by local authorities, it was confirmed that they were indeed being secretly filmed. Photos of them watching television in the bedroom and a video of Liu’s boyfriend taking a shower in the bathroom were recovered from the SD cards found in the hidden cameras. The investigators also discovered hidden cameras in three other rooms owned by the same Airbnb host.
When questioned, the host initially claimed that the cameras were placed by the previous property owner, but then later changed his story to installing the cameras himself to monitor if any of his guests smoke inside the rooms. After the news made local headlines, the owner immediately sold the property, which had been in operation for many years.
Liu said that she selected the apartment, which was marketed as a safe lodging for foreign travelers because it had some good reviews on the Airbnb app. Liu and her boyfriend decided to sue the deceptive host and are now seeking 3 million New Taiwan dollars ($99,000) in damages.
Meanwhile, Airbnb wrote a post on the Chinese social media site Weibo stating that the host has been blacklisted from its community and a full refund was made to the victimized guests. It further noted that cameras in the bathrooms or bedrooms are not allowed and any other surveillance equipment installed in the vicinity should be declared to the guests.