Internet Eyes, a company based in London, England, is paying private British citizens to monitor surveillance cameras from their homes.
The London Daily Mail reported Tuesday that the cameras are set up to spot criminals in stores and on the streets.
People watch through a feed to their homes and if they see a shoplifter they send a text message to the business owner.
Big Brother Watch calls it "the privatization of the surveillance society."
"It's astonishing to think that innocent people doing their shopping could soon be spied on by an army of busy bodies with an Internet connection," said Daniel Hamilton of Big Brother Watch.
"CCTV should be used sparingly to help solve real crimes, not to encourage this type of tawdry voyeurism," he added.
The company behind the idea argues that the cameras are a tool to fight crime.