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Public attitudes to CCTV shift following riots
New research* has found that public support for CCTV surveillance has strengthened following the riots in the UK this summer, with one in three people (37 per cent) stating their support for its use in public spaces has now increased.
The independent public opinion survey, commissioned by surveillance systems specialist, Synectics, has also revealed that 76 per cent feel safer in public areas knowing that CCTV is in operation.
The majority (72 per cent) expressed that they would be worried if their local council reduced CCTV security in order to save money, with 62 per cent wanting to see more in their local area.
Azadar Shah, Managing Director at Synectics, subsidiary of UK-based Quadnetics Group, comments: “In the past, there’s undoubtedly been public apprehension about the use of CCTV, but the research indicates that people now recognise the positive role it can play within a community.
“Security camera footage played a high-profile role in the riots – helping Police identify and apprehend offenders – and this appears to have made a strong impact on public support for CCTV surveillance. In fact, nine out of 10 people actively support the use of CCTV footage to identify rioters.”
In Bristol (photo above), one of the cities hit by rioters, 127 individuals were captured on camera, which led to 59 people being identified and charged.
Gordon Mclanaghan, Emergency Control Centre Manager at Bristol City Council said: “Without CCTV footage it would have been virtually impossible to identify the individuals involved in the riots and gather the necessary evidence. In a crowd of 200 people it can be difficult to pinpoint individual actions but CCTV footage provided to the police can be replayed as many times as required to identify each individual responsible and therefore provide critical evidence for investigations.”
Synectics works with over 100 local authorities throughout the UK providing CCTV solutions, including Manchester, Sheffield and Bristol. Azadar adds: “Advances in security technology have enhanced data sharing capabilities between local authorities and the police, so police can quickly access recorded camera footage for offender identification purposes. We work closely with local authorities and police forces to develop solutions, which allow immediate data transfer for crime investigation, without impeding usage of the surveillance system.”
Synectics Systems Group (Synectics) is a wholly owned subsidiary of UK-based Quadnetics Group Plc. Synectics is a leading developer and manufacturer of innovative and integrated security systems with 25 years’ experience providing surveillance systems throughout Europe, North America and the Middle East. Delivering protection for National, Civil and Commercial critical infrastructure, Synectics is the system of choice for the world's most demanding security environments.
For further information please visit http://www.synx.com
*About the research
Independent research was carried out by research specialist, ICM, investigating public attitudes to CCTV. It was commissioned by Synectics.
ICM interviewed a random sample of 2,027 adults aged 18+ from its online panel between 30 September and 2 October 2011. Surveys were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. www.icmresearch.com
• One in three (37%)'s level of support for CCTV in public spaces has increased following the riots (level of support for CCTV has not changed for 56%, 6% don’t know, 1% decreased)
• 94% support using CCTV footage to identify rioters
• 76% feel safer in public areas knowing that CCTV is in operation
• 62% would like to see more CCTV in their local area
• 72% would be worried if their local council reduced CCTV security in order to save money