Conwy County Borough Council receives Certificate of Compliance for management of Public Space CCTV

Left to Right: Emma Dowell (CCTV manager at Conwy Borough Council) is presented with the Certificate of Compliance by Tony Porter (the UK’s Surveillance Camera Commissioner who’s standing alongside Tony Weeks (head of technical services at the NSI). The presentation took place at the CCTV User Group Conference on 24 May

Left to Right: Emma Dowell (CCTV manager at Conwy Borough Council) is presented with the Certificate of Compliance by Tony Porter (the UK’s Surveillance Camera Commissioner who’s standing alongside Tony Weeks (head of technical services at the NSI). The presentation took place at the CCTV User Group Conference on 24 May

With the best interests of local communities firmly in mind, Conwy County Borough Council in North Wales is working to ensure the Public Space CCTV systems under its direct control are managed appropriately and, in particular, in accordance with the Surveillance Camera Code of Practice. To demonstrate the Borough Council’s success in doing just that, Tony Porter (the UK’s Surveillance Camera Commissioner) has awarded Conwy County Borough Council a Certificate of Compliance.

To ensure that Best Practice outlined within the Surveillance Camera Code of Practice is followed, Conwy County Borough Council appointed the National Security Inspectorate (NSI) as its designated independent third party certification body, with the Inspectorate duly working on behalf of the Surveillance Camera Commissioner to verify the compliance of the Borough Council’s CCTV systems with the Code.

Recently, the NSI completed a thorough review of their systems and recommended the Council for certification. The verification process is ongoing and the public can be reassured that Conwy County Borough Council’s monitoring is appropriately regulated.

Reassurance for the public

Emma Dowell, CCTV manager at Conwy County Borough Council, said: “The Council is delighted to have received this accreditation of its Public Space CCTV system. We use 114 CCTV cameras across the county covering 15 towns. Inviting independent assessors to check the system will reassure members of the public that we’re operating our cameras for the purposes intended, namely crime prevention and public safety.”

Dowell added: “I would also like to take this opportunity to thank my team of operators, all the members of which are highly trained and have assisted me in meeting the standards required.”

Tony Porter, the UK’s Surveillance Camera Commissioner, responded: “I’m delighted to award Conwy County Borough Council this certificate of compliance. This award sets the standard for Public Space Surveillance and demonstrates to the public that its system is run efficiently, effectively and transparently. I know that the NSI has worked closely with the Council and my own office to ensure this new process runs smoothly. My thanks to all involved, and congratulations once again to Conwy County Borough Council.”

Deployment and use of cameras

Organisations such as local authorities who are directly responsible for Public Space CCTV systems can apply to be assessed against the Surveillance Camera Code of Practice in order to verify that their deployment and use of cameras follows Best Practice, with all CCTV used only for its intended purpose.

The Code of Practice aims to balance the requirement for cameras with individuals’ rights to privacy drawing upon the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012. Receiving a Certificate of Compliance from the Surveillance Camera Commissioner provides tangible evidence that a CCTV monitoring operation fully complies with the Code.

Tony Weeks, the NSI’s head of technical services, added: “Conwy County Borough Council should be applauded for choosing to open up its Public Space CCTV surveillance operations to independent scrutiny, which is in the best interests of the general public. We were delighted to take the Council through the process, and we’re pleased that other local authorities are now following in its footsteps.”

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

Related Posts