perpetrators. Therefore, if trespassers or criminals don’t even realise they’re on camera, as is what we suspect in a lot of cases, what sort of useless deterrent is that? And, just how good are the images the cameras are supplying? If they’re grainy or blurred due to old or faulty equipment, or not set up correctly, that doesn’t help anyone except the trespassers or criminals. Ten years ago it was reported that 95% of murder cases investigated by Scotland Yard used CCTV footage as evidence, yet latest data suggests 80% of footage now available is of such poor quality it’s almost worthless. That apart, don’t these companies or organisations, even public sector ones, realise if they’re not properly complying with the GDP Regulation they can be penalised because of it? Sometimes to the tune of many thousands of pounds?” One year on from the introduction of
the new GDPR, Andrew cites some of the key failures that came to light in Clearway’s investigation of its own extensive nationwide client and contact list:
In no particular order:
• Failure to fit signage or keep the information on it accurate.
• Failure to carry out a GDPR risk assessment prior to CCTV deployment.
• Leaving DVRs (digital video recorders) unlocked or unsecured so anyone, not
just designated security personnel, have access to footage.
• Failure to ensure the lenses of CCTV cameras are not appropriately directed or are masked so that inappropriate footage is not recorded, and, if the data is shared with other parties, for example to monitor specific individuals, then innocent people are blurred out, a simple matter to deal with using appropriate modern software.
• Having CCTV monitors which are viewable by the public.
• Failure to have trained staff to monitor the CCTV.
• Leaving usernames and passwords as default settings or noted next to the equipment.
• If the images are to be shared with other organisations, eg the police, TfL, or other security service providers, failure to manage this appropriately to conform to Regulations.
“The example below is what was found
on one site recently. It’s a great example of common compliance failings: • DVR on reception desk with monitor on top – no one at reception – someone leaned over the desktop to look at the monitor to see if their taxi was at the front door!
• Username and password on a sticker
Case dismissed due to lack of evidence!”
The message from all this is simple. Check your CCTV systems are doing what they should and you are complying with the Regulations. Because someone, somewhere will be watching what you’re doing sooner or later.
attached to the monitor (redacted for media use)
• We walked outside to find all of the CCTV signage was so worn and old that the contact details had faded away and were illegible.
Then, in a second example, there was a
case of the settings on the equipment not being right, specifically the date and time were incorrect and two systems on the same site had times set 17 seconds apart. That might sound petty, but there was
a break-in and when the intruder was arrested police showed the CCTV footage in court. The defence barrister then asked for all camera footage to be played at the same time. As the intruder was seen on two systems
at the same time (due to the timers not being synced) the barrister claimed the evidence was inadmissible as it was clearly inaccurate since how could the intruder be in two places at once?
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