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.

Welcome to the
"Press Club Section"
Doktor Jons

Guide to Closed Circuit TV (CCTV)

If you're a professional journalist or writer, this section is intended to provide you with some fast links to key topics. Hopefully this information resource will prove useful in addressing a whole range of issues relating to the now widespread use of CCTV in modern society.

10 things every journalist should know ...

... about Closed Circuit Television

1.. Closed Circuit Television security cameras do not contain any videotapes! So statements like '..police have recovered the tapes from the CCTV cameras', are incorrect.

2.. Closed Circuit TV is not a magic bullet that can cure all criminality overnight. If a politician is 'confident' that CCTV will solve the problem, you've got a very good reason to start worrying!

3.. In the UK, there is little statutory regulation of surveillance cameras. There isn't even a standardised code of conduct for the use of camera schemes, although there are a couple of voluntary codes available in the market place.

4.. Again in the UK, the Data Protection Act potentially provides more benefit to the law defying, than the law abiding. In practice, there are a lot of camera users who are excluded from the provisions of the Act.

5.. Apart from the Data Protection Act, and to a lesser degree the Human Rights Act, there are actually few laws that directly control the use of CCTV. In practice there is no requlation of the residential use of CCTV.

6.. Most Town Centre CCTV schemes are not really optimised for crime reduction, which is why despite the huge number of cameras installed, and the enormous aount of money invested, the number of convictions assisted by CCTV are actually relatively small.

7.. If the Time and Date or caption information on a CCTV recording is incorrect, the material could be excluded from court proceedings, simply because the 'data' would be classed as tainted or corrupted, under the terms of the Data Protection Act.

8.. Whilst most Town Centre CCTV cameras can pick out an individual 100 or more metres away, they can't ever seem to catch the graffiti artists that 'tag' the cameras support column ... such is life!

9.. Expensive mobile Closed Circuit TV vehicles are increasingly being commissioned for use on the streets of Britain, and yet they are often inherently cost inefficient when compared against alternative, and dare one say, more imaginative ways to apply CCTV in the fight against crime.

10.. The average covert CCTV camera is capable of producing a clear image, looking through a hole no larger than 1.5 - 3.0mm in diameter!


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All the detailed information on this site is provided in good faith; and as such, Doktor Jon
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resulting from any individual or organisation acting on the details contained herein.

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