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Guide to Closed Circuit TV (CCTV)

So would you like to play "Spot the CCTV Camera?". Eagle eyed visitors may recognise the profusion of street furniture, surrounding a single heritage dome camera keeping watch over part  of Londons' prestigious Oxford Street shopping area.

Time Lapse, VCR's, DVR's, NVR's ...
it's time to go on the record...

The issue of Evidential Integrity

Unlike analogue Time Lapse recorders, which are pretty dumb but functional units, DVR’s tend to have a whole range of extra security features built in, including ‘watermarking’, ‘fingerprinting’, and goodness only knows what other techniques have been incorporated to ensure that the evidential images, have not in any way been tampered with.

It has to be said, that this whole area is a bit like the Bermuda Triangle, in the sense that as soon as you mention security features, suddenly nobody wants to talk about it.

Salesmen (sorry, sales persons) and engineers alike are quick to extol the virtues of their systems impenetrable security arrangements, and yet the one thing which is rarely acknowledged, is that if there is a will to circumvent a safety feature, someone, somewhere will find a way.

And yet it would appear that most if not all recordings are not verified as being ‘machine specific’, so it is at least in theory, technically possible to extract and manipulate data from one machine, before recording it onto a second 'slave' unit, which will then create a modified copy, as a new authenticated ‘master’ recording.

The problem with ‘Digital’ is it is assumed to be foolproof and secure, simply because no one has so far tried to prove otherwise.

No doubt, the existing security arrangements would put paid to most naive attempts at modifying the data, but there is always that nagging doubt that just possibly, it isn’t that difficult to ‘nobble’ a recording after all.

How to get the best from a record system >>

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