For a number of years now, public life has seen an exponential increase of the use of video recording equipment. The question remains under which conditions video equipment can be installed and to which extent video recordings can be allowed as evidence within the European Union (EU) legal system. Not only in the public space, but also on the work floor are cameras deployed regularly. In addition, it is almost a certainty that most events are recorded by dashcams, drones, or smartphones. The opinions diverge on whether or not this is a positive evolution. What has become clear is that video recordings can be used as evidence in legal procedures.
Legislation approved by the Pennsylvania state Senate on Wednesday seeks to clear legal hurdles for police departments to expand their officers’ use of body cameras, and it gives departments the discretion to refuse public requests for copies of audio or video recordings by officers. The bill, which passed 47-1 after brief comments on the Senate floor, would add Pennsylvania to a growing list of states that are setting statewide policy over the collection of audio and video by officers, including from dashboard and body cameras.
As LTO storage technology is beginning to take root in the video surveillance retention market, a lawsuit such as this described below, could ultimately reduce the number of sources to obtain this storage technology and would more than likely increase costs thus stunting the acceptance of this technology in the physical security market. With companies like Quantum and SpectraLogic and others showcasing the low-cost option of long-term video retention when using LTO storage technologies, such a supply-chain lawsuit will not help grow this market.
A bill that would block government entities from putting up surveillance cameras inside the bathrooms of public buildings has passed both the Iowa House and Senate and is expected to be signed by Gov. Terry Branstad. The ACLU of Iowa had been pushing for the bill after complaints from an Iowa City woman who noticed that a camera was focused on the sink area inside the Iowa City Public Library.
In the wake of a tragic shooting in San Bernardino, California, on Monday, the Security Industry Association (SIA) pressed for wide adoption of school security guidelines developed by the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS), which prescribe a tiered approach for schools based on available resources. SIA also announced its support of proposed funding measures on Capitol Hill that would authorize matching grants for school security measures.
Whether the intent is to find lost seniors suffering from dementia or support a manhunt for fleeing suspects, police in Chula Vista, California, (just east of San Diego) are turning to drones for quick aerial intelligence. Alongside the city’s fire department, the Chula Vista Police Department (CVPD) is investing in the technology as a way to maximize time spent by officers on tactical operations.
ASIS International (ASIS), the leading association for security management professionals worldwide, today sent a letter of support to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation for the Making Available Information Now to Strengthen Trust and Resilience and Enhance Enterprise Technology (MAIN STREET) Cybersecurity Act. The proposed legislation calls on the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and other agencies to provide a consistent set of resources for small businesses to best protect their digital assets from cybersecurity threats.
A mistrial was declared in the case of an accused Rochester Hills drug dealer this month after it was disclosed his defense attorney never received pretrial information about a mobile tracking device placed on his client’s vehicle by investigators. But still in dispute —and possibly to be addressed at a pretrial hearing Tuesday— is whether the tracker that monitored his movements was legally attached to Dukes’ 2015 Cadillac. Officials have been unable to locate the original search warrant reportedly obtained from a Pontiac district judge by Detective Charles Janczarek, a member of the Oakland County Narcotics Enforcement Team. Defense attorneys and civil right advocates said the case underscores concerns about the potential for abuse of GPS trackers by law enforcement and the need for proper search warrants.
New York City Police Department documents obtained by The Verge show that police camera teams were deployed to hundreds of Black Lives Matter and Occupy Wall Street protests from 2011–2013 and 2016. Originally acquired through a Freedom of Information Law request by New York attorney David Thompson of Stecklow, Cohen & Thompson, the records are job reports from the NYPD’s Technical Assistance Response Unit (TARU) that document over 400 instances in which the unit’s video team attended, and sometimes filmed, demonstrations. More important than the records the NYPD turned over, however, are those that it claims it cannot find: namely, any documents demonstrating that legal reviews and authorizations of these surveillance operations took place.
The Border Patrol has either lost or destroyed original videos showing the 2012 killing of a Mexican teenager by a Border Patrol agent who fired across the border, a new court filing says. Agent Lonnie Swartz fired through slats in the border fence in Nogales, AZ, 4-1/2 years ago, killing 16-year-old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez on the other side in Nogales, Sonora. Swartz was charged with second-degree murder in federal court in September 2015. His trial is expected to begin later this year. Swartz’s lawyer, Sean Chapman, filed a motion this week to have duplicate border surveillance videos precluded as evidence in Swartz’s trial because of technical (data retention) issues.