Welcome to the
"Coppers Corner"
section of
Doktor Jons

Guide to Closed Circuit TV

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.

Doktor Jon does his bit to help
the Police with their enquiries


A brief Coppers Guide to Closed Circuit Television (CCTV)
- 2. Background for using CCTV in Deterrence and Detection -


Now it's highly unfortunate that the vast majority of CCTV cameras are not properly set up for their intended purpose, possibly because no concerted attempt was ever made to understand the objectives, before the cameras were installed. To first understand a bit about the mechanics of how CCTV can be made to work effectively, it's useful to have a grasp of the way surveillance systems should be planned.

In the context of Security, there are essentially four main steps towards achieving an efficient approach when applying Closed Circuit Television; that said, it is still important to consider that in most situations, the overall effectiveness of CCTV increases when it is used as part of a wider strategy, often involving other complimentary techniques such as lighting, intruder alrms, communication links etc.

Whilst most camera schemes of whatever size are normally installed without the benefit of this approach, it is worth having a general understanding of the techniques which can so easily mean the difference between an effective CCTV system, and an expensive "State of the Art" ... waste of space!

So here we go; the first two steps are .... Step 1 which is the Crime Audit (CA)

Before you can address any given problems, you first need to understand the scope and complexity of any criminal behaviour which has previously taken place.

For most assessments, Doktor Jon would suggest two distinct levels of analysis;
Global’' which will relate to the entire premises, site or location, (e.g. the Town Centre) and
Macro’ which applies to a specific point on the drawing or map (e.g. the top of Church Street).

When compiling a crime audit, it is important to list all of the incidents that have taken place within or adjacent to, the area to be protected, in particular making note of the date and approximate time.
In addition, the audit should also reflect whether any action resulted in identification of suspects, arrests or convictions (this will later help to compare the effectiveness of CCTV, after it has been installed).

Step 2 is the Risk Assessment Survey (RAS)

This is in some respects a key towards designing an effective Closed Circuit Television system.
When compared alongside the Crime Audit,
if you can successfully identify where the risks lie, and their precise nature, it then becomes much easier to configure an optimised CCTV system to take account of these potential problems.

As part of the RAS, it is very useful to identify ‘pinch points, gateways or portals’ where individuals have to pass through, to enter, exit or move around within the site. Also higher risk locations, for example an off licence or pub, sub post office, betting shop ... or perhaps at a 'macro' level, the liquor shelf in a general store, the ATM machine outside the bank, you'll hopefully get the idea by now.
 

Topic Review:-

The Crime Audit (CA)... can be compiled as a 'global' assessment of an entire area or premises, to indicate the scale and nature of criminality. A 'macro' analysis can highlight hot spots within the global location.

The Risk Assessment Survey (RAS)... can again be carried out both as a 'global' exercise and also at a 'macro' level, to help identify where the eventual CCTV equipment is to be targetted. Key risk points, and narrow pedestrian and vehicle access locations are of particular interest.
 

Next step - CCTV Planning and Profiling - the secret to success ...? >>

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