Last Updated: December 20, 2019.
Surveillance cameras are used to observe an area. For many countries like the United States, they use cameras for monitoring community actions and movements, and to counter crime and terrorism. The installation of cameras along the road, sidewalks, around the park, parking lots, and many other places help to prevent crime before they happen or lead police in the right direction.
Surveillance cameras also assure the citizens of their safety, however many people complain about the loss of privacy and infringement of civil liberties.
Then there grow some other concerns: What regarding public surveillance? Should cameras be installed in common public sites? Are security cameras an intrusion of privacy? What are the CCTV benefits and drawbacks?
Since most of these surveillance cameras are essential in displaying people’s privacy, the governments should also consider practising trustworthy and good VPNs for 2020 to prevent hackers from accessing public/personal information, and that equivalently critical likewise installing the security cameras.
In a discussion about whether monitoring cameras should be put in public spaces, like, stores, libraries, schools, airports, cafes, and clubs, some selves seem more confident with the cameras, while other subjects and privacy advocates appear worried or nervous surrounding the fact that they are under surveillance every time they go out in public. Similarly, your online life also needs privacy and protection, hence reliable VPNs would do the job if you are concern about your online secrecy and identity theft.
Level of Surveillance in the US
The United States has 70 million installed surveillance cameras across the country, which caters to 4.6 people per fitted camera. Currently, America is in par with China in terms of camera penetration, and that is raising privacy concerns from the public. The only difference is that China is heavily focusing on public spaces, and the cameras are bankrolled by the government, whose plan is to provide widespread video surveillance coverage within public areas.
On the other hand, the US surveillance cameras are common among commercial establishments, private sectors retail, restaurant, office complexes, and hotels. But that does not mean the U.S. government is not in the business of surveillance.
Today, several American cities have been installed with surveillance infrastructure. For instance, Baltimore and Detroit are cities where they have heavily installed cameras to monitor the residents. Detroit, in particular, surveillance cameras are designed to monitor public housing residents while in Baltimore, it has been alleged that the police department has, for a couple of years, conducted secret aerial surveillance to its residents.
Police departments are partnering with Amazon Ring, which is a doorbell camera to push the product among local homeowners that encourage citizens to monitor each other.
China has a reputation as a surveillance state regarding the massive installation of cameras because the country has more closed-circuit TV (CCTV) cameras deployed than any other country. Still, the U.S. is ahead per capita usage.
The U.S. state defends its increase of surveillance to solve crimes. For instance, during the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013, the suspects were quickly identified after investigators picked them from a CCTV footage, which prompted calls from law enforcement for more surveillance cameras to be installed.
As the United States is increasing the installation of surveillance cameras for security reasons, there has been an outcry from citizens who feel their privacy is being invaded. According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the US constitution provides citizens with protection against video surveillance searches that are conducted by the police. But there is no specific law that is legally enforceable to limit privacy invasions to protect citizens against the abuse of CCTV systems.
Currently, China is drafting a new law to help safeguard data privacy. Still, experts are not convinced, and they have questioned the country enforcement, given that the State could abuse its power when collecting and using private data provided by the mass surveillance systems that are installed. In fact, today, China is taking its surveillance game higher by introducing cameras that can scan faces and identify people’s movements in some scenarios.
The western government, however, is not impressed with the move and human rights activists concerning mass surveillance of some minorities in some areas.
It is estimated by the year 2025; there will be 1 billion cameras globally installed. According to HIS Markit predicts, the growth is driven by technological advancement, government funding with a focus to public safety, and competition in prices among the camera makers.
Proponents of surveillance cameras support the idea that they help to deter criminal activities, but no evidence to support this. On the other hand, civil rights advocates foresee the continuity of surveillance cameras and other technologies that expose citizens when undergoing their day to day activities as being abused. They claim this idea is harassing innocent citizens by invading their privacy.
In case you plan to use personal CCTV for your home or business, consider looking for best VPN for windows pc to safeguard yourself and data from getting hacked by e-criminals.
The concern about people’s privacy is still keeping U.S. citizens worried about what the State plans to do with their massive surveillance being installed in every corner of the country.
Study shows that six out of ten Americans believe that it is not possible to through daily life without having their data collected by both the government and companies.
While the State may mean good for the citizens by installing surveillance cameras, there is a likelihood of the idea of getting abused. One incidence is when a top-ranking police official in Washington, DC, perused police database to gather information about patrons of a gay club. He negatively used the information by blackmailing patrons who were married. Now, that is one incidence that happened over 20 years ago, what would happen to a spy camera system covering an entire city?