New code of conduct for CCTV systems


CCTV Keypadoriginally by: Birmingham Mail
1st March 2011

Police forces and councils who want to set up CCTV systems will have to be open and clear about what they will be used for and why under Home Office plans following a controversial scheme in Birmingham.

The plans for a new code of conduct come after West Midlands Police apologised last year over a controversial CCTV scheme which saw more than 200 surveillance cameras installed in largely Muslim neighbourhoods across Sparkbrook and Washwood Heath.

The code may also say how long data, including images from automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras, such as those which helped track the killers of Pc Sharon Beshenivsky in Bradford in November 2005, should be retained.

Crime prevention minister James Brokenshire said: “CCTV and ANPR systems play a vital role in the prevention and detection of crime. “However it is important they are used in a way that does not invade law-abiding people’s privacy or undermine the public’s confidence in them.

“That’s why we are establishing this code and that’s why we are asking the public what they think should be in it.”

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