The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (Code of Practice for Surveillance Camera Systems and Specification of Relevant Authorities) Order 2013 (SI 2013/1961) (order) has been made and brings into force the surveillance camera code of practice. The code sets out new guidelines for CCTV and automatic number plate recognition, and it is intended to encourage transparency in their use and ensure that public bodies, such as local authorities and the police, consider whether new cameras are proportionate before installing them. Other operators and users of surveillance cameras in England and Wales are encouraged to comply with the code on a voluntary basis. The code will come into force on 12 August 2013. The order also specifies additional relevant authorities that must have regard to the code when carrying out their relevant functions (section 33(1), Protection of Freedoms Act 2012). They include the Chief Constable of the British Transport Police, the Serious Organised Crime Agency, the Chief Constable of the Civil Nuclear Constabulary, and the Chief Constable of the Ministry of Defence Police. The adoption of the code follows a government consultation in February 2013. See also the Surveillance Camera Code of Practice, 9 August 2013. For guidance on this to ensure that your use of CCTV follows the voluntary guidelines contact Christopher Evans ACIArb.
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