Information Commissioner Releases New CCTV Code of Practice

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has issued updated guidance on CCTV video surveillance today.

Entitled “In the picture: A data protection code of practice for surveillance cameras and personal information”, the 44-page document sets out “good practice advice for those involved in operating CCTV and other surveillance camera devices”.

Jonathan Bamford, Information Commissioner's Office

Jonathan Bamford, Information Commissioner’s Office

Writing on the ICO’s blog, Head of Strategic Liaison Jonathan Bamford said: “The days of CCTV being limited to a video camera on a pole are long gone. Our new code reflects the latest advances in surveillance technologies and their implementation, while explaining the key data protection issues that those operating the equipment need to understand.”

He said the code takes into account the rapid pace of technological change in the CCTV industry and aims to ensure that CCTV cameras are used within the rules of the Data Protection Act.

“One common theme from the enforcement action we have taken in relation to the use of surveillance cameras is that there needs to be a thorough privacy impact assessment. This needs to be done before deploying these increasingly powerful and potentially intrusive technologies. The code will help you stay on the right side of the law and save you the wasting money and resources on uncompliant systems,” he wrote.

The code can be downloaded in PDF format from the ICO website.

Jonathan Bamford will also be conducting a free webinar on Friday, 17 October to answer questions about the new code.

ICO webinars
The new code of practice (PDF)

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