CCTV Study Reveals Widespread Support
New research commissioned by Security Products from Siemens has found that a clear majority of consumers do not believe that the widespread use of CCTV infringes on people’s civil liberties. In addition, the survey revealed overwhelming support for the use of CCTV in reducing crime.
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The study – carried out by YouGov between February and March 2013 – questioned over 6,000 adults in France, Germany, Spain, Sweden and the UK about their views on CCTV and its role in society. The research was prompted by concerns about the widespread use of this technology and the ability of governments around the world to regulate it to avoid abuse.
Respondents were asked to agree or disagree with two statements. The first statement was ‘I believe that the widespread use of CCTV cameras infringes on people’s civil liberties’. In Sweden 69% said that they felt that CCTV does not curtail freedom, followed by the UK (65%), France (57%) and Germany (45%). In Spain, however, the figure was much lower and only 33% said it doesn’t invade privacy. See what others think.
The second statement was ‘I agree that CCTV cameras are useful in reducing crime and providing evidence to the police’. Despite the negative perception in Spain regarding privacy issues, 89% of respondents there answered positively to this question – the highest out of the five countries. It was closely followed by Sweden (88%), France (83%), the UK, (81%) and Germany (77%).
Commenting on the findings, a retail manager stated, ‘The overwhelming agreement that CCTV acts as crime deterrent suggests that people are making a “trade off” by balancing their concerns about civil liberties against the perceived benefits that CCTV brings to the detection and prosecution of crime. The figures also give a strong indication of the confidence the public has in the effectiveness of this technology and the role it plays in keeping them safe from harm.’
Interestingly, across all those surveyed, younger adults expressed greater concern for CCTV’s effect on their civil liberties than their other generations – although this was less pronounced in the UK than countries such as Germany. Read more views.
Also, the discrepancies in the survey’s findings could be attributed to the types of reported crimes that are most prevalent in different countries. For instance, according to figures from Civitas, per 100,000 of the population, there were 1029 burglaries in Sweden compared to 420 in Spain.