UK reviews surveillance camera code of practice

Londnon, UK

The UK government is consulting on revisions to the code of practice to reflect changes in legislation. This is the first revision to the code since its introduction in June 2013. The code, issued under section 30 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (PoFA), provides guidance on the appropriate use of surveillance camera systems by local authorities and the police.

The proposed draft updates references to subsequent legislation, in particular Data Protection legislation, and the judgment in Bridges v South Wales Police.

There is also some rationalising of the text to make it easier for the user to follow (specific amendments are outlined in the attached grid). The amended code does not place any additional burden on those authorities who should have regard to it, and the list of relevant authorities defined in the PoFA is not being extended at present. Subject to the comments received, the government’s intention is to lay the draft code before parliament in late autumn.

The Biometrics and Surveillance Camera Commissioner, Professor Fraser Sampson, is responsible for encouraging compliance with the code and reviewing how it is working. The commissioner and his office are encouraging contributions to this consultation from a wide range of stakeholders and are making themselves available for discussion over the course of the consultation period.


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