where do we draw the line?
While monitoring the cameras from his office one day, he was shocked by what he saw. He is just one of many employers here who install cameras at home to monitor their maids’ activities: A study in 2015 showed that at least one in five domestic workers in Singapore is living with CCTV cameras at their workplace. WATCHED CONSTANTLY. In the last two years, there have been a number of reported cases about maids committing crimes at home, such as theft and abuse of young children and the elderly. Many of these cases were exposed thanks to CCTV cameras – which is why employers like Mr Sun resort to the technology as a precaution.
While some domestic workers have accepted the presence of these cameras at their workplace, others complained about a loss of privacy, and how they are being watched constantly. For Indonesian ‘Rita’, the excessive monitoring by her former employer was simply too much – the cameras were everywhere, in the living room, the master bedroom, and even her own room. MORE SAYING NO TO CAMERAS. Maid agency United Channel said it had seen more cases where domestic workers reject job offers from employers with CCTV cameras at home. When domestic workers complain about CCTV cameras in the home, the agency said it would usually attempt to resolve the situation with the employers.
While employers might install CCTV cameras for peace of mind, few have given thought to what one can and cannot do with these cameras. Ministry of Manpower guidelines state that the employer must inform the domestic worker of the cameras’ locations, and these must not be areas that would compromise her privacy or modesty, such as where she sleeps or changes clothes, or in the toilets. Lawyer Steve Tan from Rajah & Tann explained that it is perfectly legal to install CCTV cameras at home to record the activities of a household, including that of the maid. All in all, employers seem to have the upper hand when it comes to the monitoring, recording and sharing of footage captured from their CCTV cameras at homes.
Most uses of CCTV by organisations or businesses will be covered by the DPA. The ICO has also issued a code of practice that provides recommendations on the use of CCTV systems to help organisations comply with the DPA. CCTV systems which make use of wireless communication links should ensure that these signals are encrypted to prevent interception. CCTV systems which can transmit images over the internet should ensure that these signals are encrypted to prevent interception and also require some form of authentication for access. The devices used to store CCTV images are also a common target during a break-in.
In responding to subject access requests or other disclosures, data controllers should consider an appropriate format of the data to be disclosed, and appropriate security controls. During procurement, the capability of the device or prospective system to export data securely to third parties should also be considered. A data controller receives a subject access request for CCTV images. The CCTV system can export images to an MP4 file format which can be accessed by the data subject on his personal computer. The data controller uses a file encryption product to encrypt the data before saving onto a CD and posting it to the data subject.
Once the data subject confirms the safe receipt of the disc the data controller discloses the password used to generate the encryption key. A second data subject submits a subject access request for CCTV images to be provided in a DVD Structure format. The data controller accepts the request but is unable to encrypt the images because the DVD Structure format is not compatible with encryption and would therefore not be accessible to the data subject because a consumer DVD Player will not understand the data format. The data controller makes the data subject aware of this limitation and offers them the choice of collecting a DVD in person, recorded delivery, or to export in an alternative format.
Are Salisbury Poisoning CCTV Images Actually Surveillance Pictures?
In the latest chapter in the Salisbury Novichok saga the police have released a selection of images of two men they are naming as Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov. There’s no camera ID number or timecode or anything indicating this is from a CCTV camera. To capture image 6 the camera would have to be pointed down at the pavement on that side of the road. The camera appears to have motors, enabling it to be moved remotely, but given the angle of image 6 we can only assume this is not the camera’s default angle. So if image 6 was captured by this camera then someone would have had to be moving it remotely, using it as a surveillance camera.
Unlike the camera that apparently captured image 6, this camera is pointing in completely the wrong direction and doesn’t appear to have any motors enabling it to be moved remotely. So we have two images, clearly of these two men, clearly at specific geographical locations in Salisbury. There is no date, no timestamp and nothing else to indicate they are from CCTV cameras. Additional cameras were installed, or the cameras and/or their angles were moved in between when those streetview pictures were taken and when Petrov and Boshirov visited Salisbury. The images were captured by surveillance cameras, though it is difficult to see where any such cameras would be placed in order to capture images 6 and 7.This is all complete horseshit and the images were fabricated, badly.
While the fourth option might seem speculative, consider that the police still have these images up on their site labelled with the wrong address - Fisherton Road instead of Fisherton Street. A final thought: the reason the police released still images and not video is because someone was controlling the cameras to follow these two men, whoever they are and whatever they were doing. If the police do eventually release video from static cameras capturing these images then I will concede that this line of questioning is moot.