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Covert property marking and CCTV


 

There is an increasing move towards using UV fluorescing markers such as 'SmartWater', to both covertly mark property, and also act as a sprayed 'person' marker if intruders are detected unlawfully within a premises.

The obvious problem with the spray marker system, is that unless a suspect is visually checked with a UV lamp, which normally only happens after an arrest has been made, then it is almost impossible to identify someone that has been tagged by the marker fluid.

One possible solution (if you'll pardon the pun) would be to use a strategically placed CCTV camera as part of a targetted operation. Now before you start saying that CCTV won't work, the important point to mention here is that the camera is not a conventional unit, but rather an Ultra Violet imager, that has been optimised for this purpose.

So for example, by fitting a UV "pass" filter, the camera will only produce images in a very narrow band of UV frequencies, with all other visible frequencies omitted from the image. The camera should work quite happily in any area lit by daylight (the sun being the ultimate daddy of all UV lamps), and if it were necessary to record a suspect for later identification or court use, then a second conventional colour camera can be recorded alongside the UV imaging unit, using a standard four channel Digital Video Recorder.

Ideally, the cameras would need to be located in a public place, such as a shopping centre, market or perhaps outside a local pub thought to be frequented by less than honorable patrons.

As this suggested technique is very much theoretical, it would be very interesting to hear of any examples where this approach has been trialled.

 

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