Data Protection: CCTV

House of Lords written question – answered on 24th January 2008.

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Photo of Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer Spokesperson in the Lords, Home Affairs

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What data protection rules cover the use of closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras and footage, including domestic CCTV; and what plans they have to ensure that all CCTV systems are covered by the Data Protection Act.

Photo of Lord Hunt of Kings Heath Lord Hunt of Kings Heath Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Ministry of Justice, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

The Data Protection Act 1998 covers all processing of personal data by automatic means, including those closed circuit television (CCTV) systems where it is possible for the operator to identify distinct individuals from the footage or information relating to individuals, such as vehicle registration marks. The Act provides an exemption for any processing carried out purely for personal, family or household affairs. There are no plans to remove that exemption. It is the data captured by the CCTV systems that are covered by the Act, not the systems themselves. The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) publishes a code of practice on the use of CCTV. The ICO has reviewed this code of practice and a revised version is due to be launched on 28 January.

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