Taxi CCTV ranks a low priority - Whilst a number of local authorities around the UK are looking at encouraging taxi drivers to install CCTV in their cabs, for one driver in Wales, his experience has been somewhat alternative. Monmouthshire Council as the local taxi licensing authority, has actually insisted that the camera be removed from his vehicle. - Source - BBC News 2nd June 2010
Pictures worth a thousand words - Researchers working at the UCLA in California, have been developing a computer based evaluation system, that can convert video images into descriptive text. The technology whilst not yet market ready, is nevertheless sophisticated in its capability of breaking down an image into constituent parts, and then producing a written and searchable database of it's contents. - Source - Physorg.com 3rd June 2010
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Oh ... well replayed sir!! - Scientists from the University of Exeter, have been carrying out a detailed research project, looking at the behaviour of Gryllus campestris, also known as the field cricket. Using 96 infra red cameras dotted around a meadow in Asturias in northern Spain, the scientists managed to record over 250,000 hours of video material, detailing the most intimate aspects in the everyday lives of all 152 resident crickets. - Source - TimesOnline 4th June 2010
Water, water everywhere .... - Extending the use of their existing CCTV operations, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) have decided to use their remote surveillance infrastructure to help monitor key areas of the city at risk from flooding. Whilst the existing storm drainage is designed to cope with intense rainfull, and even typhoons that regularly batter the Philippine's, flooding is often caused by residents dumping their garbage, which invariably blocks up the pumping stations. - Source - GMA News.tv 6th June 2010
Uncertain outlook for tackling crime - After six years of putting up with anti social behaviour on his Colchester estate, a housing association tenant has installed five cameras in his home, in an attempt to gather sufficient evidence for the authorities to tackle the problems. Now having received complaints from neighbours, the estate management have warned him that his CCTV might possibly constitute a breach of lease, and he may well be compelled to take them all down. - Source - Daily Gazette 6th June 2010
Views from above, studied from below - With the US military increasingly using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) in theatres of war, the sheer bulk of video surveillance footage that is now being gathered has created significant problems for commanders. Trying to archive and catalogue surveillance videos on such a huge scale, has prompted analysts to look at techniques currently used by the broadcast TV industry, to see if it's possible to electronically tag events and features, to help intelligence officers locate key segments of recordings in a far more efficient way. - Source - Los Angeles Times 7th June 2010
Seeing isn't always believing - A new book which in part explores the wider implications and effects of video surveillance, has been published by the author Professor Torin Monahan. Examining the concept that video surveillance may create a false sense of security, and ultimately prove to be counter productive as an effective security measure, is just one of the themes discussed in "Surveillance in the Time of Insecurity". - Source - Vanderbilt News 8th June 2010
Not enough time in the line - The suspect in a murder trial was successfully tracked by detectives, using a trail of CCTV images from a number of cameras located along the route leading to the scene of the crime. Despite claims from the killer that his vehicle had been incorrectly identified at the beginning of it's journey, the prosecution managed to demonstrate to the court that in order to have been recorded on two cameras at the times he claimed, the Mitsubishi Shogun would need to have been driven at 545mph. - Source - The News - Portsmouth.co.uk 12th June 2010
It drives you up the pole ... - Frankston City Council in Australia are the less than proud owners of nine brand spanking new street surveillance cameras, that have been gathering dust in storage for the last seven months. The CCTV system was originally purchased with a Aus$ 205k Federal Government grant, but could not be installed due to a lack of suitable poles to support the cameras. Hopefully the lack of support should be resolved within the next few months. - Source - Frankston Leader 14th June 2010
Cops capture card thief on camera - Stealing money from a persons cash card may be a fairly universal problem, but when the victim is employed in the budget inspection branch of the Azad Maidan Police Commissionerate, it shouldn't take too long to get the authorities on the case. As officers from the Mumbai police started their investigations, they quickly recovered CCTV recordings taken at the ATM machines, and were able to identify a senior clerk employed in the victims office. - Source - DNA India 14th June 2010
Turning the tide on seaside vandals - The picturesque south Devon resort of Teignmouth has been plagued with problems caused by arsonists lighting fires, with whatever material they can lay their hands on. Now the local authorities are deploying CCTV on the beach to deter any fire starters, and if that fails, hopefully to help identify specific individuals causing problems. - Source - This is South Devon 14th June 2010
Kiwi questions over camera concerns - New Zealands Law Commission has been looking in to the use and privacy implications for the future operation of CCTV. Whilst predictably the police are champions of the technology, and civil liberties advocates are less than impressed, the Commission has referred the use and storage of security camera data to the country's privacy commissioner, who is expected to report back later in the year. - Source - TVNZ-Television New Zealand 14th June 2010
Failing to deliver - A 30 year old midwife from Tyldesley, UK has felt compelled to make an official complaint to Wigan Council, after her vehicle was vandalised for the third time in six months. Her disgust at the ongoing problems in her neighbourhood, are only surpassed by her knowledge that the vandalism was committed "... under the watchful gaze of four council CCTV cameras". Unfortunately, the images are so poor that they don't provide any benefit for investigating officers, and would consequently be unfit for evidential purposes. - Source - Wigan Today 14th June 2010
The result of no consult - Local MP's are pushing for answers in Parliament, following the revelations that West Midlands Police and Birmingham City Council have been using around 150 surveillance cameras, in predominately muslim areas of the city, without consulting the residents. It's been reported that the deployment of both overt, covert and ANPR cameras under Operation Champion, has been funded through counter terrorism grants. Whilst their installation is supposedly intended to tackle crime issues in the Sparkbrook and Washwood Heath areas, the cameras are also believed to be used to monitor extremists thought to be living within the communities. - Source - Birmingham Post 14th June 2010