Emerging Tech

Expert claims 95 percent of CCTV in the United Kingdom are operating illegally

According to a closed-circuit television (CCTV) expert, up to 95 percent of the CCTV systems operating in the United Kingdom are doing so illegally. Apparently, companies operating CCTV systems in the United Kingdom are required to alert the Information Commissioner of what they are doing and to put up signs warning the public that recording is taking place.

According to a closed-circuit television (CCTV) expert, up to 95 percent of the CCTV systems operating in the United Kingdom are doing so illegally. Apparently, companies operating CCTV systems in the United Kingdom are required to alert the Information Commissioner of what they are doing and to put up signs warning the public that recording is taking place.

According to The Register, this revelation comes in the wake of new legislation about to take effect in Scotland that could render even more of these systems illegal.

Excerpt from the article:

From my own my experience after personally surveying many, many hundreds of buildings, I would say probably less than five percent are compliant," said Brooks. "I would say that 95 percent are non-compliant in one way, shape, form or another with the [Data Protection] Act. Obviously, that's quite a worrying thing. If the system is non-compliant it could invalidate the usefulness of the evidence in a court of law.

According to Security Industry Authority (SIA) head of investigations, Jennifer Pattinson, the new licenses for individuals means that the operator of CCTV equipment that is monitoring public spaces will likely need to have an SIA license.

On the more sobering side, it appears that an analysis of London's 10,000 cameras show that crime-solving statistics are no better with boroughs covered by many cameras compared to those with few cameras.

 

In recent years, CCTV has started to permeate into IT as the price of IP-based cameras and storage start to plummet. Does your company use any CCTV? Whose jurisdiction are these CCTV under, and do you think that they serve any practical use in the first place?

 

 

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

4 comments
Inkling
Inkling

Some companies that I have worked for have utilized them and some have not. At some, they were managed by IT and at others they were mananged by Physical Security (which was part of a large IT organization). At some places they were superfluous, at others they were essential. I think they are fine, in the workplace. Outside the workplace, I don't think they are very useful. CCTV stops only one group of people from committing crimes: those that are VERY unlikely to in the first place. Yes, there are many cases where it helped solve crimes, but I think they are a weak link. I think law enforcement learns to rely on them to police crime for them (it's just human nature). I think it offers people a false sense of security. As I said, it isn't going to stop a violent criminal from killing you. It might help the police in punishing him for doing so, but that is little consolation to you (the person that is already dead). The simple fact that only five percent of these cameras are in compliance with law should say a great deal about their usefulness (or lack thereof) and their flaws.

chrisbedford
chrisbedford

- that the cameras can show clearly who killed you, but the killer can walk because he wasn't warned in advance that he would be on CCTV? What bloody nonsense. But then most of the legislative landscape in the UK is bloody nonsense, why would I expect anything different regarding CCTV...

paulmah
paulmah

Whose jurisdiction are these CCTV under, and do you think that they serve any practical use in the first place?