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City CCTV 'must respect privacy'

Last updated 17:12 27/11/2012
'HAPHAZARD' RULES: There are no guidelines on how CCTV should be used in Auckland and how privacy can be protected.

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Aucklanders' privacy needs to be protected as CCTV becomes more prevalent, a councillor says.

Auckland Council is working to develop guidelines for CCTV in the city and deal with "haphazard" rules around its use, Community Safety Forum chairman George Wood said.

The forum will today consider how to create a regionally co-ordinated approach to CCTV networks, and be updated on a memorandum of understanding which is being developed with police.

"CCTV in public places is an increasingly popular community safety tool that is seen to play a part in enhancing both perceptions of safety and crime prevention," the forum's agenda reads.  

Wood said both the police and private operators used CCTV in areas throughout Auckland, but there was no coherent set of guidelines for the whole city as to how it should be used and how people's privacy could be protected.

"We need to know what happens to the information from CCTV and what that information is going to be used for."

Wood said costs also needed to be considered as it would be expensive to maintain and monitor every CCTV network across the city.

He said the council also wanted to know the impact of CCTV in certain parts of Auckland and asked if it displaced people to other areas.

At this stage, Wood said, the policy was generic and there were no plans for the council to be involved in the set up of new CCTV in Auckland in the near future.
The guidelines and memorandum of understanding are not likely to be given final sign off until 2014.

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