Turning up the heat on poachers - Existing high tech infra red and thermal imaging cameras used to protect US critical infrastructure from possible terrorist attack, will in future be deployed to tackle a more down to earth problem. Natural Resources Police officers are soon to be provided with access to the Maryland Law Enforcement Information Network's long range imaging systems, to help locate and intercept poachers intent on depleting natural resources such as oyster beds, from vulnerable sites in the Chesapeake Bay. - Source - The Baltimore Sun 31st January 2010
Putting the brake on speed cameras - State Representatives in South Dakota USA, are pushing legislation to outlaw the use of cameras for enforcing vehicle speed restrictions, and red light violations. The technology has proven so unpopular with legislatures that there are currently fifteen states that have moved to outlaw the use of imaging technology for traffic enforcement. - Source - The Newspaper.com 30th January 2010
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It's not looking good - Despite being on an almost permanently high level of security alert, Delhi's IGI Airport has reportedly been suffering failures in up to 40 CCTV cameras located throughout the complex. Although the problems have been reported to the airport operators, it's believed that the units have been out of action for up to two months. - Source - The Times of India 30th January 2010
Sick of secretive surveillance - Shocked workers at the Hospital of the University of Montreal (CHUM), have discovered twenty hidden miniature CCTV cameras secreted throughout the site. Having been installed by managers as part of an 'administrative investigation', employees are pretty much powerless given that Quebec law permits the use of covert surveillance in these circumstances. - Source - Toronto Sun 29th January 2010
Life in the fast lane - Residents living on Terry Road, in Hartford, Connecticut, USA have decided to tackle problems with speeding motorists, by installing their own technological solution. Having been plagued by cars racing through from the nearby university, a resident decided to fix two street monitoring CCTV cameras on the tree in his front garden, and then leaflet local vehicles warning them that any cars caught speeding would be referred to the authorities; initial findings suggest that vehicle speeds have dropped significantly since the cameras went up. - Source - Hartford Courant 28th January 2010
Smart or stupid ... you decide - Waltham Forest Council in Essex, UK, has decided to become the first local authority to post details of it's CCTV vehicle operations on the internet. Their six video equipped Smart cars are routinely deployed to catch drivers committing traffic offences, and in response to growing outrage from furious motorists, they will in future place the precise locations, dates and operating times on their website. - Source - Waltham Forest Guardian 26th January 2010
Bringing back order in the wake of chaos - The Kanda Suehiro Association organised a ribbon cutting ceremony this week, to celebrate the launch of a sixteen camera street surveillance system in the Akihabara district of Tokyo. The area was rocked by a frenzied attack back in 2008, when a truck driver ran amok killing a total of seven people. It's hoped that the new CCTV scheme will help to improve the areas standing, as the 25 year old attacker moves to trial in the next few days. - Source - The Japan Times 27th January 2010
Facing up to the future - Scientists working at the University of Toronto have developed a unique privacy encryption tool for video surveillance systems. The revolutionary technology will be demonstrated at the "Privacy by Design : The Gold Standard" event being organised by Ontario's Information and Privacy Commissioner to be held later this week. Unlike existing privacy masking systems, this new technology allows facial images to be masked out on a recording, but subsequently recovered with the appropriate secure decryption key if the images are required to assist in an investigation. - Source - Newswire.ca 26th January 2010
Cameras on the cut and run - Officers at Slough Borough Council, UK, are becoming increasingly concerned by a spate of vandalism attacks on their street surveillance cameras. In the most recent incident, the cover was forced off the CCTV mounting pole and all the live cables cut through, which with past attacks has proven to be a pre cursor to further criminal activity. - Source - Slough & Langley Observer 25th January 2010
They just ain't bovvered ... - Local residents in Gipsy Hill, South London, are becoming increasingly frustrated at Lambeth Council's use of their traffic enforcement CCTV Smart Car. The vehicle which is reportedly parked up unlawfully during operation, has been issuing Penalty Charge Notices to motorists that fail to give way to oncoming traffic. A recent Freedom of Information request has indicated that 321 tickets were issued at the road junction during September and October 2009, or roughly equivalent to one being printed every five minutes. - Source - Streatham Guardian 25th January 2010
Open discussion on closed circuit - A Lay panel which oversees CCTV operations in Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, UK and reports directly to the Borough Council, is planning to hold a public meeting next month, to give residents the opportunity to raise questions about the use of their local camera scheme. - Source - This is Local London 23rd January 2010
Droning on about surveillance - It's been reported that plans are being developed to deploy airborne surveillance systems over the UK, using adapted military standard drones. The project which is being backed by the Home Office, will see BAE Systems and the South Coast Partnership, which includes Kent Police, working on a practical solution that can be brought into service in time for the 2012 Olympics. - Source - Guardian.co.uk 23rd January 2010
The message is clear - The US National Transportation Safety Board has been carrying out an inquiry into the fatal Chatsworth rail crash in September 2008, which was caused by the driver passing through a stop light, whilst apparently sending a text with their mobile phone. The key recommendation to the Federal Railroad Authority, is that all train cabs should in future be fitted with both audio and video recording systems, something which has gone down less than well with the train drivers union. . - Source - Progressive Railroading.com 22nd January 2010
Looks as daft as it sounds - CDespite residential CCTV being exempt from the UK's Data Protection Act, Birmingham City Council have decided to switch off their tenants video door entry systems, in case any tenant tries to record the pictures, and in so doing their use contravenes the visitors human rights. - Source - Telegraph.co.uk 21st January 2010