The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has welcomed the revision of British Standard BS 7958 Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) Management and Operation Code of Practice, which has been updated to take into account the latest legislation.
BS 7958:2015 provides recommendations for the management and operation of CCTV within controlled environments where data – which might later be offered as evidence in a Court of Law – is received, stored, reviewed or analysed.
The BSIA has been a key influencer on the review committee from inception through to completion, with the updated standard now joining a large portfolio of British Standards to which the Association has made vital contributions.
BS 7958:2015, which will be extremely useful to anybody who’s responsible for the operation and management of a CCTV system, has been expanded to include some of the newer technologies in the CCTV arena such as Automatic Number Plate Recognition and body-worn cameras.
Explaining the document in a little more detail, David Wilkinson (director of technical services at the BSIA) told Risk UK: “BS 7958 covers CCTV systems which are used for monitoring in those areas where the public has a ‘right to visit’ such as educational establishments and arenas like sports stadiums. The British Standard helps to ensure that CCTV system owners are able to obtain reliable information that can be used as evidence in order to secure a conviction.”
Evidence gathered using CCTV cameras is one of the most successful ways of securing convictions in court. Criminals are much more likely to plead guilty when faced by the undeniable evidence provided by way of them being ‘caught on camera’.
“A court hearing with a guilty verdict saves around £3,000 to £5,000,” urged Hugh Marriage, former Home Office crime reduction officer for the South East of England. “Without doubt, CCTV pictures mean that there has been an enormous increase in guilty verdicts.”
A key change from the previous edition of BS 7958 has been the acknowledgement of the 12 principles of the UK Surveillance Camera Code of Practice issued by the UK Surveillance Camera Commissioner (as required by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, and wholly supported by the BSIA’s CCTV Section).
Simon Adcock, managing director at ATEC Security and chairman of the BSIA’s CCTV Section, stated: “Camera technology is developing at a rapid pace. The results that can now be obtained from professionally designed and implemented systems increase the value of CCTV in fighting crime and protecting people and property. It has been proven that CCTV makes the public feel safer and that public support for CCTV is strong.”
Adcock continued: “Ensuring this continued support is critical for our industry and law enforcement. To its credit, the Government acknowledged this challenge and created the role of the UK Surveillance Camera Commissioner within the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, which gave rise to the Code of Practice and its 12 principles. The Code seeks to ensure that camera systems are only installed where necessary, that privacy is considered, standards compiled with and that the resulting information is kept secure and handled appropriately. We’re pleased to see that BS 7958 supports the principles of the Code and to have played an important role in its development.”
*For more information about the work of the BSIA’s CCTV Section visit: www.bsia.co.uk
BSIA publishes guidance on lone worker services in the hospitality sector
The BSIA’s Lone Worker Section has just published a guide to lone worker services in the hospitality sector. The guide, which is aimed at employers and stakeholders operating in that space, highlights the importance of lone worker safety and explains how lone worker devices are helping to keep employees safe.
More than six million people in the UK work either in isolation or without the safety net provided by direct supervision, often in places or circumstances placing them at potential risk. A wide variety of organisations and industry sectors employ people whose jobs require them to work or operate alone, either regularly or on occasion.
Almost by definition, lone working can be both intimidating and, at times, dangerous. That being so, the protection of lone workers involves a two-fold approach, not only designed to provide safeguards but also to offer reassurances for the individuals involved.
Within the hospitality sector, lone workers often include Front of House hotel staff, pub and nightclub employees and motorway services personnel, all of whom are often required to work late at night in locations which put them in contact with the general public.
However, the hospitality sector is wide-ranging in its scope and employees in many other job roles can also benefit from lone worker protection.
As is the case in any other UK industry that employs lone workers, hospitality companies have a legal Duty of Care to their employees which can result in heavy fines and even imprisonment for directors and managers if found to be negligent of this situation.
Craig Swallow, chairman of the BSIA’s Lone Worker Section and managing director of member company SoloProtect, explained: “I’m really pleased to see the publication of this valuable guide for those employers and other stakeholders in the hospitality sector. It’s a vertical market where there are many types of lone workers facing risks such as verbal abuse or slips, trips and falls. Operating with peace of mind and having an ability to raise a discreet call for assistance without causing a fuss is important for hoteliers and other establishment owners.”
The BSIA guide provides useful information on what constitutes lone working, how lone worker protection solutions operate in the real world and the importance of British Standard BS 8484.
Including examples of how lone worker companies have provided support to a number of hospitality organisations, the BSIA guide also outlines what end users ought to look for when choosing a system. These elements include:
*the device or smart phone applications should be certified to BS 8484
*the solutions provider must be able to prove that they’re certified to BS 8484 through audit
*monitoring by an Alarm Receiving Centre certified to BS 8484 (Part 6) and BS 5979 (Cat II)
*solutions that fit the lone working application and risk profile of the workforce