CCTV

Camden operates CCTV on the council’s housing estates, highways and buildings. It is one of the many tools used for the purpose of assisting in detecting and deterring crime and anti-social behaviour (ASB); and ensuring the safety and security of employees, members of the public, and the council’s buildings and assets.

Other interventions are encouraged prior to installing CCTV. Interventions will include but are not limited to: design out crime projects, patrolling services, and identifying other resources and shared objectives with partners.

Camden has the responsibility for enforcement of the borough’s parking and moving traffic regulations and to promote compliance with these regulations. This is carried out in part through CCTV. To find out more including if you have received a PCN (Penalty Charge Notice) check here.

Camden operates CCTV 24/7, 365 days a year in partnership with the council’s Trading Standards, Environmental Services, Police, other Emergency services, Transport for London (TFL), Camden Businesses and other stakeholders.

Our CCTV objectives are

  • To deter crime and anti-social behaviour
  • To detect crime and provide evidential material for court proceedings
  • To reduce the fear of crime, disorder and anti-social behaviour and promote feelings of safety
  • To detect and prevent environmental issues
  • To assist in civil proceedings
  • To assist the Local Authority in its enforcement and regulatory functions.
  • To assist in Traffic and parking Management
  • To identify and or monitor risk and vulnerability
  • To enhance community safety, assisting in developing the economic well-being of Camden and encourage greater use of the borough's public spaces.

See for Camden's camera signs

Our CCTV is governed by the following legislation to protect your rights and privacy

CCTV may be regarded by some as an infringement of people's liberty. CCTV systems must not only be used with the utmost integrity at all times, they must be used in a manner which stands up to scrutiny and is accountable to the very people they are aiming to protect.

CCTV can have negative effects on privacy, as people do not always want to feel ‘watched’ or ‘under surveillance’. It is important to make sure that all CCTV is used correctly, and only where needed. CCTV use must be accountable and open to scrutiny.

Everyone has the right to respect for his or her private and family life. Although the use of CCTV cameras has become widely accepted in the UK as an effective security tool, those people who do express concern tend to do so over the handling of the information (data) which the system gathers. Where there is high risk of privacy intrusion we take measures to restrict the scope of the cameras.

For independent advice and guidance on surveillance cameras you can contact the Information Commissioner's Office or helpline on 08456 30 60 60.

Those operating CCTV

All our CCTV Operatives hold valid Security Industry Authority (SIA) Licence, BTEC Level 2 in CCTV Operations. They are also Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checked and are also Non-Police Personnel Vetted Level 1 (NPPV1). CCTV Managers are trained to BTEC level standard for Managing CCTV Control Rooms.

Data Storage/retention periods

Recorded images are stored for 31 calendar days, after which time the data is automatically deleted.

Contact us CCTVPatrols@camden.gov.uk

Complaints and Data Protection concerns

Camden council takes CCTV Surveillance concerns or complaints very seriously. Should you wish to raise a data protection concern or make a complaint please contact the council’s complaints or Data Protection Team.

Types of disclosure

Road Traffic Collisions, Incidents, Insurance companies and solicitors

If you’ve been involved in a road accident, and are the registered keeper of the vehicle then you can request access to CCTV images of the incident (if available) through your insurance company. You will need your insurer to make the request and provide scanned copies of 2 official documents showing your name, date of birth and address. For example, your:

  • passport
  • birth certificate
  • driving licence
  • utility bill current
  • other recognised ID

You should also:

  • give an accurate location of the incident to the nearest junction
  • supply the make, model and colour of the vehicle(s) involved
  • give as much detail as possible of the incident

We only supply images of the registered keeper requesting the information, and we would not supply images with third party (other people’s) pictures in unless we felt it was appropriate to do so in the circumstances. We may decline a request if insufficient or inaccurate information is provided, the CCTV footage is likely to become part of a criminal investigation or we are unable to obscure other identifiable persons and we feel it is inappropriate to release the data without obscuring them.

Responsive Security Patrol

CCTV operate alongside our Security Patrol where CCTV cameras are available. Should you wish to contact security patrol please contact 020 7974 4444 or email RSP@camden.gov.uk.

What do they do?

Responsive Security Patrol consists of 5 vehicles transporting them around the borough, each vehicle with two RSP officers. They patrol on foot and in vehicles on council’s residential housing land. Providing pro-active and reactive response to calls and intelligence received about ASB occurring on Council Housing land. Calls can be made by anyone i.e. council tenant, leaseholder or non-council residents.

Purpose of RSP service

  • To deter, detect and disrupt Anti-Social Behaviour (ASB) within council Housing land/premises
  • Responding to reports of ASB conducting foot patrols in a safe and proportionate manner
  • To ensure objective, factual and clear reports generated following each task attended
  • To ensure escalating situations and public order issues responded to appropriately
  • Where there are CCTV resources, CCTV deployed in support of RSP addressing ASB 
  • To engage with residents, members of the community and businesses providing reassurance
  • Gathering intelligence feeding back to council via incident reporting
  • To engage with perpetrators/reported individuals using restorative approaches
  • Attend community engagement meetings 

Key Points

  • Conduct Welfare Tenants checks
  • High visibility foot and vehicle patrol
  • Full PPE including Body Worn Video 
  • Vehicle CCTV
  • Two-Way Radios
  • Reports completed for each visit, can assist Housing Officers with residents on specific issues
  • You can report anything from Noise Nuisance, Disturbances, Rough Sleeping, Alcohol Use, Drug Use, Motor Vehicles and Ball Games etc.
  • Provided with call Unique reference number should you wish when you telephone
  • Call back facility should you wish after you have reported for RSP to attend
  • Anonymous calls should you wish you do not need to provide any personal details when reporting
  • Available 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, Mon – Sun, 4pm to 4am
  • A contact point of physical refuge
  • Information contact of local area
  • Emergency co-ordinators (flood in properties, property evacuations etc.)
  • Partnership working with agencies such as Police, Safer Streets Team and Community Presence Officers (CPO) 

Annual Report

Housing CCTV upgrade project

The council tendered and evaluated the contract for this project and went through a two stage process of consultation before sign off and contract awarded.The first stage is to install a new wireless network around the borough and then installing new cameras. New camera installation is not expected until late summer, early autumn 2021. A number of communications will go out to residents to allow the council to start building information and knowledge of each area. This engagement will then intensify closer to the time of actual installation.Order of installation will be estate by estate, based on risk and threat in liaison with Community Safety, Police and any other intelligence held.

If residents are experiencing crime they are encouraged to report to Police on 101 or 999 if urgent.

Anti-social behaviour can be reported to the council’s Community Safety Team on CommunitySafety@camden.gov.uk and for the Council’s Responsive Security Patrols (RSP) between 4pm and 4am Mon-Sun telephone 020 7974 4444.

Requests and Payments for CCTV footage

Primary requests to view CCTV data are likely to be made under the Schedule 2 of Data Protection Act 2018 by third parties for any one or more of the following purposes:

  • Providing evidence in criminal proceedings (Schedule 2 Part 1 5(3))
  • Providing evidence in civil proceedingsor tribunals (Schedule 2 Part 1 5(3))
  • Prevention of crime (Schedule 2 Part 1 2(1))
  • Investigation and detection of crime (may include identification of offenders) (Schedule 2 Part 1 2(1))
  • Identification of witnesses. (Schedule 2 Part 1 2(1))

Third parties must show adequate grounds for disclosure of data within the above criteria.  Third parties may include, but are not limited to:

  • Police
  • Statutory authorities with powers to prosecute, (e.g. Customs and Excise; Trading Standards, etc.)
  • Solicitors
  • Claimants in civil proceedings
  • Accused persons or defendants in criminal proceedings
  • Other agencies with a genuine purpose

On receipt of a bona fide request for the release of data, the Council will ensure the retention of data which may be relevant to a request. An appropriate time limit shall be imposed on this retention, and the requestor will be notified of this without undue delay.

All such enquiries will be treated with strict confidentiality.

Residents' disclosure

Camden Council records CCTV images for the purposes outlined in the above objectives. We cannot disclose personal data to a third party unless we have a legal basis. We will not normally disclose CCTV footage to residents except through the lawful procedures described above.

If residents are concerned about crime, ASB, safety and security or damage to property then they can raise this with the Council through the usual channels.

Media disclosure

In the event of a request from the media for access to recorded material, the procedures outlined under 'secondary request to view data' shall be followed. If material is to be released the following procedures shall be adopted:

  • Release of the material must be accompanied by a signed release document that clearly states  what the data will be used for and sets out the limits on its use, and indemnifies the Council against any breaches of the legislation.
  • Release form shall state that the receiver must process the data in a manner prescribed by the data controller, e.g. specific identities/data that must not be revealed.
  • Material should not show images which could lead to the identification of members of the public in the media without their knowledge or consent.
  • Proof of any editing must be passed back to the data controller, either for approval or final consent, prior to its intended use by the media (protecting the position of the data controller who would be responsible for any infringement of Data Protection legislation and the System's Code of Practice).
  • Release form shall be considered a contract and signed by both parties. 

Individual subject access under data protection legislation

You have a right to obtain a copy of CCTV footage that shows you.  This is called a Subject Access Request (SAR).

More information is available on the Council website, please read that before making a subject access request.  

For CCTV subject access requests, we will usually only provide footage of the person making the request unless all other individuals who may be identified from the same information have consented to the disclosure or it is appropriate in all the circumstances to release the footage without their consent.

All other personal data which may allow the identification of any other person should be concealed or erased and third party data will only be released without third party consent where the council considers it appropriate to do so in the circumstances of the case.

We will not be able to provide footage if insufficient or inaccurate information is provided so we cannot identify the footage.  Where it is not appropriate to release third party data, we will see if footage can be concealed or erased to allow a disclosure.  If that is not possible we will make reasonable efforts for example providing a description of the CCTV footage and what is shown.  Each request is treated on its own merit.

Submit a Subject Access Request

Release of evidence

When you contact us at CCTVPatrols@camden.gov.uk you will be provided a request form to complete. Should we have any footage relating to your request, we will process and release. Where a payment of £70 for footage is applicable you will be notified.

Obtaining copies of CCTV

If you need to obtain a copy of CCTV footage this section advises when and how it might be obtained. Remember that footage is only kept for 31 days. If the incident happened more than 31 days ago the footage will not be held.

Charges for CCTV footage

A charge of £70 per CCTV DVD unless it is released under a Subject Access Request (see above).

Should CCTV footage be available, you will be provided with a unique reference number, which must be quoted in all your correspondence. For data security reasons, footage must either be collected in person (please bring the reference number and photo ID) or via a point to point courier payable by the requestor.

Cheques are made payable to: London Borough of Camden. Please write the CCTV reference number you will be provided on the back of the cheque and post to the address provided.

Online payments

  1. Click on Miscellaneous
  2. Click on CCTV
  3. Click on CCTV Data Payment
  4. Complete all relevant fields – unique reference number (URN) would have been given to you when you contacted CCTV requesting footage.
  5. You will be automatically provided below details.

     A. Payment Reference
     B. Authorisation Code
     C. Transaction Date

Please ensure you provide these (A,B,C) to CCTVPatrols@camden.gov.uk confirming payment has been made and footage will then be provided.

Installing CCTV on residential property

Can I install CCTV on my residential (council tenant or leaseholder) property?

It is legally permissible for tenants and leaseholders to install CCTV cameras in order to protect their property. Therefore, it is difficult to prevent. The guidance on siting of CCTV cameras these are the council guidelines:

  • The use of CCTV in this instance must only be for domestic purposes such as improving the security of an individual residence or the personal security of that person and must not be used for public space surveillance.
  • The use of CCTV in this instance must never be used to carry out surveillance of a neighbouring property or an individual in that neighbourhood. It must not be intrusive or be used to harass or intimidate others.
  • The CCTV must only be used to survey the leaseholder or tenant’s own property, including their sole use gate, garden etc.
  • The CCTV must not be installed where it will cover common parts such as shared gardens, gates, stairs, doors etc.  A small amount of incidental wider coverage e.g. where a CCTV for a sole use front door covers a small part of a common part path maybe acceptable on a case by case basis.  Where this is the case the installing tenant/leaseholder needs to adhere to the data protection rules, including providing adequate signage which will notify people about the recording, its reason/s, and, if recordings are made, how to obtain a copy.
  • Where tenants or leaseholders are using CCTV to monitor any part of the public realm outside of the confines of their personal space and property which is more than merely incidental this may become a breach of the Data Protection Act or may amount to a criminal offence in some circumstances. They will be advised in writing to adjust or remove the equipment immediately or they may face prosecution or other enforcement action. In the first instance this letter should come from the landlord or landowner.
  • Where a resident or leaseholder does not comply with requests to remove the equipment which is being used unlawfully this should be reported to the Police or to the Information Commissioners Officer (ICO). The details are at the bottom of the document.
  • Legal advice should be sought by Council Officers before taking action and the breach of tenancy clause should also be considered.
  • Tenants and leaseholders must always notify the Council first and seek permission if they are considering installing CCTV on their property.
  • Tenants and leaseholders should contact the Community Safety & Emergency Management Service or their Housing Office if they have concerns about crime or anti-social behaviour in their neighbourhood.
  • Audio recording is discouraged.  Where audio or video footage are retained, this should be for a defined period of time and not indefinitely. Audio and CCTV recordings can be lawful in certain circumstances, and tenants/leaseholders should consult the ICO (www.ico.org.uk) for advice.

Can I install CCTV on my privately owned property?

Think about the problem you are trying to tackle. It will usually be to safeguard you and your property against crime. Check with your local police about crime prevention. Better locks, security lighting or an alarm system may be more effective and less expensive ways of securing their property.

The ICO’s recommendations stress using CCTV responsibly, to protect the privacy of others/your neighbours. Ask yourself:

  • Is CCTV actually the best way to improve your home security?
  • Do I really need CCTV?
  • Are there other things I could use to protect my home, such as better lighting?
  • What is the most privacy-friendly way to set up the system?
  • What areas do I want the cameras to capture?
  • Can I position the cameras to avoid intruding on my neighbours’ property or any shared or public spaces?
  • Do I need to record the images, or is a live feed enough?
  • Has my CCTV system got an audio-recording facility? Audio recording is very privacy-intrusive. So in most cases where householders use CCTV, they should disable audio recording.

Private and External spyhole doorbell

Homeowners are advised to consider whether the camera captures images beyond their personal home (including garden or gate etc.). If the camera only captures images of the householder’s property and does not store images it will probably be exempt from data protection law. However, if the camera has a wider focus or retains images, then it may come under data protection legislation.

You should consult the Information Commissioner’s Office www.ico.org.uk for advice.