Thursday, September 20, 2007

So what ARE they there for?

A new report says that although there are tens of thousands of CCTV cameras in the Greater London area, 80% of crimes go unsolved.

London has 10,000 crime-fighting CCTV cameras which cost £200 million, figures show today.

But an analysis of the publicly funded spy network, which is owned and controlled by local authorities and Transport for London, has cast doubt on its ability to help solve crime.

A comparison of the number of cameras in each London borough with the proportion of crimes solved there found that police are no more likely to catch offenders in areas with hundreds of cameras than in those with hardly any.

In fact, four out of five of the boroughs with the most cameras have a record of solving crime that is below average.

That's because cameras aren't supposed to prevent crime.  They are like gun control.  They allow the politicians at the local and the national level to be seen Doing Something About Crime just by spending a little of your money, and they add another layer of control on the general populace.  CCTV sucks for solving general crime, but it rocks for collecting taxes and spying on individuals.

It also takes cops off the street and puts them in a nice warm, safe office where they can drink coffee all day and don't have to run around in the rain writing tickets.  That's why cops love CCTV.

Incidentally, the 200 million pounds was for just the cameras, not the control/recording network or the guys to watch them.  Imaging the storage needed for video from 10k cameras running 24/7.  Petabytes.

Just remember that the next time some ponce of a city councilor proposes cameras.  Its crap.

The Photographed Phantom

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