Airbnb Has To Hand Over User Data To New York City Attorney General Eric Schneiderman

Eric SchneidermanAP ImagesNew York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman

New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is cracking down on
the apartment-sharing site Airbnband its users, demanding that the company hand over user data on an estimated 15,000 New York City apartment hosts.

The Daily News reports Schneiderman subpoenaed the data as part of an investigation into the website stemming from a 2010 law that makes it illegal to use to rent out your own apartment in New York City.

David Hantman, Airbnb’s head of global public policy, released this statement on Airbnb’s site.

Within it, he says “[Airbnb] believes the Attorney General is only seeking to target an incredibly small number of bad actors who abuse the Airbnb platform” citing people that have caused issues like noise disturbances.

Hantman says even the politicians who wrote the original New York law agree it was never designed to target ordinary, everyday people who occasionally share their homes. The idea is to bring to light the landlords who wrongfully evict tenants so they can rent out the empty apartments and profit.

Airbnb thought it was out of the woods regarding its legality in New York when it won a court ruling allowing people to rent out their rooms with the company.

“We want to continue to work with policymakers to clarify these rules, fight illegal hotels, and ensure people in New York can share their homes with travellers from around the world,” Hantman writes.

Correction: An earlier version of the story said Airbnb had until the end of business today to hand over the data, as stated in a report by The New York Daily News. A spokesperson from Airbnb reached out to Business Insider to say that there is currently no deadline on when the data has to be given to the AG office.

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