As part of the National Surveillance Camera Strategy for England and Wales, the Surveillance Camera Commissioner has announced the world’s first Surveillance Camera Day, to launch with a ‘secure by default’ standard at IFSEC International this year.
Taking place on 20 June, the day is intended to raise public awareness about how and why surveillance cameras are used, the regulations governing their use and the data protection rights of citizens. It is also designed to generate debate that encourages policy-makers and technology providers to strengthen cybersecurity and privacy safeguards at a time when advances in AI and facial recognition are generating considerable alarm.
Secure by default
The Commissioner is encouraging surveillance camera control rooms to open their doors to the public on Surveillance Camera Day so they can see, first hand, how they operate. A number of surveillance camera operators will also publish a surveillance camera factsheet to demystify the subject for those who don’t work within the surveillance camera industry.
And the Commissioner will launch a ‘secure by default’ standard at the IFSEC International conference in London. Manufacturers that meet the standard, which sets criteria for making surveillance technologies inherently cyber-secure without user configuration or additional systems – will gain a crucial edge with customers who are increasingly concerned about cybersecurity threats.
A world first
Tony Porter, the Surveillance Camera Commissioner, said: “Surveillance Camera Day is a world first. The UK is sometimes referred to as ‘the most surveilled country on the planet’.
“I want to start a conversation about how surveillance cameras are used, why they’re used and who is using them. Cameras are used to keep people safe but new and emerging technology can lead to greater infringements to our civil liberties.
“Civil engagement is a key strand of the national surveillance camera strategy and I want people who use cameras to shine a light on what they do – how they’re using cameras to protect communities not spy on them.”
More information about the day will be made available over the coming weeks and anyone who wants to get involved should get in touch with the Surveillance Camera Commissioner’s Office.
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