Can you record only locally and not to the cloud?

Have you checked to make sure that camera is running the latest firmware? I remember reading something about a similar issue that they fixed through firmware a few months ago. If your camera is still running old firmware, you might not have the necessary patch.

If everything is up-to-date and it’s still happening, you should definitely submit a support request. I’m sure they’d want to look at your logs to figure out what’s happening because it shouldn’t be doing that.

A lot of good information shared here!

Could you elaborate in more technical terms what do you mean by “directly from the camera to your device” in this answer? Can you record only locally and not to the cloud?

Hello all.

There have been some great answers to this question, but none of them have really answered it.

I’ve tested a few things and have come to this conclusion.

There is no way to use this device without internet access if you want to stream the feed to your device. There also seems to be no way to disable cloud storage – even when you use local storage.

What does this mean? All of your videos are going into the cloud regardless of using local storage.

Here’s why I believe that to be the case.

  1. Even when you are connected to the same network as your device, when you don’t have an internet connection you can not stream live feeds nor access the camera – at all. Outside of requiring data sharing, this is an issue because if a burglar cuts the cable, your cameras go down, too.

2 . Wyze offers 14-days of streaming storage for free with your account which I have not been able to “turn off” or cancel. Again, the camera is useless without an account.

  1. When event/motion alerts are turned off you still see new videos when you go to the events section in the app. That is the same when you use local or cloud storage option. My point is further explained in my 4th point.

  2. If you put your phone in airplane mode, you are no longer able to view events. They disappear which means the data is being synced with their servers. This is the case when local storage option is enabled. Some videos appeared to save on the SD card as well. I believe local storage is an option to store more than 14-days of data, not to replace or circumvent cloud storage.

I’ve been looking for an affordable “private” camera system and this was recommended due to cost and functionality. However, it’s not even close to private. The dead give-a-way is that you cant view your feed or even setup the camera without an account - your data is flowing to their servers. Period.

Many folks have commented saying that they are ok with someone monitoring their videos. They must also be OK with a stranger walking into their front doors. I’m not ok with strangers doing it whether they are in the real or virtual world. Door locks are manufactured for a reason, not to be aesthetically pleasing. Camera security should be treated the same. Especially if there is audio.

If you want a affordable private system, your best bet is to setup a NAS device or similar with wireless IP cameras. That solves the privacy issue and allows you to monitor your home when you are not home. You’re also the ONLY person that can review videos. Again, what’s the point of security if you give your keys away?

I hope this helps some of you.

Can you explain this ? As far as I know, you need the WYZE app with an account that is linked to an email and phone number to setup any camera to work with the app. How can I setup a camera to send feed to WYZE without an account ?

You can’t run a Wyze Cam with the Wyze app without an account.

However, you can record video locally to the SD card and not have any video uploaded to the servers. To do so, go to Camera Settings > Event Recording and turn OFF Detects Motion and Detects Sound. Then go to Alarm Settings and turn off both alarm detection options. Now there will be no 12 second videos sent to the cloud.

You can still have video recorded locally to the SD card, although the camera does need to initially start that process. However, no actual video would be sent to the servers.

@Loki has covered the options thoroughly, but to add to one point, your cam does need Internet connection to initialize. Once it is up and running it can be disconnected from the internet and even Wi-Fi. Downside of Wi-Fi disconnection is that you can’t access thru the app until reconnected. You can pull the card and access your recordings via another device with a card reader. Correct me if I’m wrong on this @Loki.

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Thanks Loki. This is precisely what I wanted to highlight in Rah.B’s post above which seemed to indicate a security hole or not being private enough with Wyze.

Sure. The purpose of the wyze app is to connect to the camera via the internet whether that be while in you’re home or when away.

When you’re home and connected to your network, you don’t necessarily need any other credentials to send and receive data or connect to devices that are already on the same network unless they are secured with a username and password. This is how computers on the same network share printers, storage devices, etc. They can talk to each other with or without a modem that has a connection to the outside. You just wont be able to access the internet.

Think about casting a video to your tv. All you need to do is have both devices connected to the same network router. If you’ve already downloaded the movie/show, you can cast without an internet connection. There is no need to send the video from your phone - to the cloud (internet) - to be downloaded again by your tv.

Wyze cams cant be setup until you download the app, create an account then enter your network credentials. The connection to the camera is then made when you scan the QRC code. Try doing this without internet and you’ll see what I mean.

If you’re connected to the camera viewing the live feed and unplug your internet, you’ll loose the connection. Even though both devices are still connected to wifi. Your camera will then show offline.

Let me be clear, the camera will still record view to the SD card, but it will not be online. You won’t receive anymore event notifications, events in the cloud wont be accessible and your app will tell you that it’s trying to reconnect.

In theory, you should still be able to access your camera using the assigned IP address. Logging into your modem/router when you’re not home is a way to do this remotely. You can use a browser, terminal or the command line to do so. Apps like iSpy replace the fore-mentioned methods making this process much more user friendly. This is not the case with wyze cams. They require you to access them via their app only. And the app needs an internet connection to work even in your own home/office.

The only way I’ve been able to use the camera without it sending data to the cloud first is to block TCP/UDP services in my router. That way the internet connection is active, but the camera can no longer communicate with wyze servers. The live feed works as it normally would, but I no longer have access to events in the app, nor do I receive alerts. It also disconnects when I lock my phone and has to be manually reconnected. When services are allowed all works as it should.

All companies are targets to hackers if they have valuable data. Feeding it to wyze even if encrypted from your phone to camera still gives hackers opportunity to access and review data that is not encrypted ON their servers. This is a security concern. Even 2FA can’t stop that from happening.

Hope that was a thorough explanation without putting you to sleep.

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Yes! Sometimes after a power outage at a remote site, our WiFi hotspot does not automatically come back up, but the Wyze cams will. So the cams merrily record to their SD cards and we can view the footage later by removing and reading the SD cards, or by using the Wyze app once the internet feed is restored. A very useful feature actually.

But what you said about accessing live Wyze cam feeds was most interesting. If I understand ciorrectly, you started viewing the cam feed(s) in the Wyze app on a device on the same LAN as the Wyze cams. Then you blocked some/all of the TCP/UDP ports/services used by the Wyze cams in the router connecting that LAN to the internet. But even then you were still able to view the live Wyze cam feeds up until the phone/tablet was locked or went to sleep.

So basically the Wyze cams and Wyze app have to talk to Wyze mother ship just long enough to authenticate the connection between the two. Then all of the live video feed data travels directly across the LAN from the cams to your device - no internet needed and no leaking to the cloud. So all you lost from doing this were the alerts and the 12 sec event clips.

So, in theory, if you had a tinyCam Pro server up and running on a LAN. And it was serving up Wyze cam live feeds from cams on the LAN to PCs/devices on the same LAN. You could cut/blacklist the TCP/UDP services to the Wyze cams in the internet router and the whole thing would still work? You could still view the Wyze cam live feeds from within the LAN even though the internet was down, just as long as tinyCam Pro background server stayed running and held the established connection to the cams open? And since tinyCam Pro can record its own clips to USB/FTP/SDcard/etc, you would still be able to locally save and view those clips as well?

This sound like a fun thing to test out! :grinning:

Yes, that is correct.

However, even after the phone locks up, I’m still able to reconnect to the device when it’s unlocked without allowing the services again. There are a handful of times when I’ve needed to completely close out and reopen the app but that’s less painful to me than sharing private data.

Awesome, Thanks!

So it looks like the crucial steps are to give each cam a reserved IP address and then block at least TCP port 443 to/from those IP addresses at the internet router. This will reinforce the Wyze app setting of not recording motion/sound/person events to the cloud and make absolutely sure that no private video gets uploaded outside the LAN by the Wyze app.