Singapore Airlines has responded to consumers who voiced the fact that they felt watched on the flights, stating that the cameras on its in-flight entertainment have been “permanently disabled” and cannot be activated on board. This comes after some passengers complained on Twitter and raised concerns around privacy laws and compliance.
Some of the netizens said that the cameras, albeit disabled, has to be covered up. A couple of netizens also raised a question if these cameras complied with GDPR regulations.
I hope you notify all your passengers, and get their consent, particularly EU residents, that you are doing this, why, what you are doing with the data, and how long you keep it. Otherwise you may be looking at a serious #GDPR issue.
— Charlie Germano (@CharlieGermano) February 18, 2019
Yeah they look like tablets and they just have cameras built in probably. I trust you saying they’re off (I mean, I can’t even think of a bad thing you could do with them anyway). Great idea would be to put stickers over them to let your customers feel comfortable.
— Kyle G (@TiE23_) February 19, 2019
The airline also told Marketing in a statement that it has no plans to enable or develop any features using those cameras.
The SIA spokesperson further explained that some of its newer in-flight entertainment systems provided by the original equipment manufacturers do have a camera provisioned and embedded in the hardware. These cameras were embedded by the manufacturers for future developments. The issue of the cameras were first raised when passengers brought to social media for an explanation after spotting cameras on the airline.
With its impeccable service, the airline has been in the news quite a fair bit this year. Most recently, it topped YouGov’s annual BrandIndex Buzz rankings for Singapore. In a list featuring a large number of global brands, the national carrier reigned supreme for the fourth year in a row. Meanwhile, Singapore Airlines (SIA) also warned customers earlier in the year of a fake website offering free air tickets in return for personal details. In a Facebook statement, the airline said the scam requests for customers to enter his/her personal details to receive free air tickets, as part of a lucky draw contest.
Most notably for the marketing industry, it recently appointed PHD and TBWA as its marketing agencies after a six-month pitch process handled by R3.