Friday, 28 December 2012

Surveillance cameras in Canadian cities

G8 2010 surveillance at the Muskoka Airport
The next time you walk down an urban street, look around. Chances are you’ll see surveillance cameras pointed at public spaces. In Canada we have laws about this. They can install CCTV, but they must post information about it.

  • Can you tell who is operating those cameras?
  • Why are they there?
  • Do you know what is happening to your image?
  • Are these surveillance networks compliant with Canadian privacy laws?


    Signs should at a minimum clearly tell you: who is operating the camera who you can contact if you have questions the purpose(s) of the surveillance.

    A study conducted in 2010-2011 by researchers at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Information found that most privately operated video surveillance networks in the Greater Toronto Area (approximately 70%) did not display any signs at all, even though they are required to do so. Of the signs that did exist, not a single sign was found that met all basic requirements under

    Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA).

    Vancouver Loses Track Of Who's Looking At CCTV Footage ... The City of Vancouver is rapidly losing track of who accesses closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage. That's according to the Georgia Straight, who reported that the city doesn't always log who accesses footage from CCTV cameras or how often.

    Store video cameras failing to comply with privacy laws 28, 2012  Most retailers in Canada are failing to follow new federal rules when it comes to operating video surveillance cameras in their stores and businesses, according to a study by a professor of information studies at the University of Toronto. 
    Andrew Clement, co-founder of the Identity, Privacy and Security Institute, found that not a single video camera in one of Canada’s largest malls complied with the signage requirements of the federal PIPEDA.

    Guidelines for the Use of Video Surveillance Cameras in Public Places
    by A Cavoukian - 2007 - Cited by 1 - Related articles
    Commissioner. September 2007. Information and Privacy. Commissioner of. Ontario. Guidelines for the Use of. Video Surveillance Cameras in Public Places 

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