The Information Commissioner’s Office has launched a consultation to update its CCTV code of practice. The code was last updated in 2008 and it is thought that developments in technology since then necessitate a review. The code provides good practice advice for those involved in operating CCTV and other surveillance camera devices. For local authorities, as well as the obvious application to their CCTV camera networks, this will also include body-worn cameras being used increasingly by local authority employees and agents. Recommendations in the re-drafted code include those with the aim of:
- ensuring compliance with the Data Protection Act and other legislation;
- reducing reputational risks by doing so; and
- reassuring those whose information is captured.
The code lays out factors which should be considered in deciding where and which surveillance systems to use and recommends that a privacy impact assessment is carried out. It highlights that failure to carry out such an assessment has ‘contributed to many of the data protection problems that have occurred in relation to the use of surveillance systems’. The consultation is open until 1 July 2014 and can be accessed at the following link:http://ico.org.uk/about_us/consultations/our_consultations.