New national guidelines for CCTV


December 15, 1999

New national guidelines for operators of closed-circuit TV systems were launched on December 15 1999 by the British Standards Institution.

The BSI guidelines, BS 7958:1999, cover privacy, observations, recorded material, procedures for record keeping, access and security screening, data handling and media disclosure.

BS 7958:1999 has been specifically designed for use with closed circuit camera schemes in places like town centres, shopping precincts, rail stations, schools, colleges, churches and hospitals.

"CCTV has become a part of modern-day Britain and is not going to go away" said David Lazenby, BSI's Director Standards. Increasingly CCTV is being used as an arm in crime detection and prevention, in cases like the Warrington bombing and the James Bulger murder case it has been remarkably successful. So the cameras has proved to be of great benefit to industry, the public and the police."

"But that also means there have to be common guidelines to protect the public. There is a human rights issue here quite clearly. These BSI guidelines embody the ethos of the individual's right to privacy as outlined in the Data Protection Act and the Human Rights Act and provide a model code for fairness and taking responsibility for the CCTV operation."

The guidelines have been prepared in collaboration with the CCTV User Group, Association of Chief Police Officers', Association of British Insurers, Association of Security Consultants, British Retail Consortium, British Security Industry Association, British Telecommunications PLC, ex-police in industry and commerce, Home Office, Inspectorate of the Security Industry, International Professional Security Association, the Post Office and the Security Industry Association.

Wilma Tulloch on +44 (0)20 8996 6330 OR
Marc Edney on +44 (0)20 8996 6330