Public Video Surveillance Essay

1432 words - 6 pages

Public Video Surveillance


Today’s technology has changed the way we live. It has changed the way that we view the environment, act when out in public, and the way we go about doing our daily task. Computers have greatly increased our capabilities to achieve our goals much faster. Human interaction between people has decreased because of this technology. The changes continue daily with an endless stream of new ideas and ways of doing things. There seems to be no end in site. This technology is also changing our moral and ethical values along with the way we employ them.

The “burden of proof” has a new meaning because of surveillance cameras. Most of us will agree that surveillance cameras are a good idea. These cameras provide a deterrent against crime, and provides public buildings and other areas a since of security.
Law enforcement use surveillance cameras to track and catch criminals, as proof in courts, and as protection for themselves and the public. Surveillance cameras can also be used for educational purposes. X-ray cameras have the ability of detecting weapons in baggages at our airports and other public buildings.

They now have cameras mounted on top of stoplights to detect red light runners with ways of sending the red light violators their tickets by mail.
There must be an endless list of ways that cameras can be used. We even have satellites in outer space with cameras that help us to spy on other countries. Most of us will agree that the technology of camera surveillance is important and needed to improve for the most part our lifestyles.


PROTECTION OF PEOPLE AND PROPERTY, which includes the general public and law enforcement. This type of surveillance is used to detect theft, assault, and vandalism, and other crimes by identifying the perpetrators.

PROTECTION OF PUBLIC INTEREST would include, public places where criminal acts could affect large numbers of people or anti social acts.

CROWD CONTROL, for example is a major sport event this surveillance would help law enforcement to maintain control over troublemakers.

NATIONAL SECURITY is surveillance used to detect the presence of weapons and explosives in airports, and government buildings.

COASTAL SURVEILLANCE is to detect illegal immigrants and drug importers.

ROAD SAFETY is to monitor busy street and roads and the flow of traffic.

IDENIFICATION is for drivers of autos, law enforcers, and government officials, Immigration just to name a few.

PERFORMANCE includes surveillance over jobs to improve performance and also because of Health and Safety issues.


Surveillance in public places does not present a legal obstacle. Interpretations of the First and Fourth Amendment and California law say that surveillance is used for protection of the citizens, which makes it legal.

The issue of privacy ranks number one in regards to surveillance cameras, yet it has very high priority for law...

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