Gary Trotter, general manager at leading CCTV installer - Hadrian Technology - makes suggestions on how CCTV should be used in Britain, following a recent Channel 4 documentary which poses some interesting questions about whether we sacrifice privacy in return for feeling safer.
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- "'Caught on Camera' talks to security staff about how they see their role, and highlights the position of responsibility these security professionals are put in. When CCTV is being used in public places there should be strict rules in place that assess and regulate who has access to CCTV footage. Businesses should have strict background checks and ongoing auditing procedures when employing security staff to avoid the misuse of CCTV."
- "If legislation drew up no-go zones that cannot be monitored we could avoid some of the misuse of CCTV that appears in this series of programmes. Most agree they feel safer with CCTV in place in the lobby, lift and outside doorways; it's when cameras monitor private spaces that it causes problems.
"It should definitely be illegal for a man to collect film footage of young girls on their private property, and post these videos on YouTube. There is no difference between a camcorder or CCTV footage in this case. We at Hadrian Technology are able to block out zones and create password protected areas within a field of vision so only public spaces are viewed. Legislation that encourages this ethos would reassure those who fear CCTV and protect those who are doing no wrong."
- "Hadrian Technology work with commercial and domestic clients and believe that as much as someone has the right to privacy, the right to protect your private property and family is equally important. The majority of us live in towns or cities where perpetrators of crime have become difficult to catch and with fewer policemen 'on the beat' and with limited access to resources, as the Policemen in this documentary state, CCTV is an effective way of providing evidence when you are vulnerable."
Common sense should be used when deciding how and where to use CCTV
- "Most CCTV is installed in public places for a very specific reason, unfortunately often because a member of the public has been attacked or a business owner has suffered losses like the vulnerable newsagent in episode two. It is interesting that most of the parents Channel 4 spoke to were in favour of CCTV."
- "I am surprised there aren't more rules and regulations that police those who want to use hidden cameras. There isn't a system set-up to enforce any sort of code of conduct for CCTV; despite the fact the Home Office announced a CCTV code of conduct earlier this year. We are a security company that consider all the implications behind a client's requests and feel we have a moral responsibility to consider how CCTV is going to be used."