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Homeland Security: The Sworn Duty of Public Officials

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Thursday, March 24, 2016

London's "Ring of Steel" / Victim's rights - publicization

What technological advances made the creation of the Ring of Steel possible? Is there scope for less technologically advanced countries to incorporate the principles of the Ring of Steel in their security measures? How?

Advances in video quality and reductions in production expenses have made the use of CCTV monitoring systems more available for police to protect public spaces. “The availability of inexpensive image sensors - the basic prerequisite for video surveillance - and ample computing power has enabled the development of embedded, real-time video analysis systems that can provide compressed data or meta event information directly”(Eurekalert, 2004, para. 4). However, there are additional costs that agencies should be aware of. While the Urban Institute found that CCTV systems such as London's Ring of Steel” can reduce crime, they stressed that for such systems to work they must be monitored consistently. In the Institutes study at three sites, researchers found that “Stakeholders at all three sites stressed the cost of installation , maintenance , and monitoring— which turned out to be much higher than the cost of the cameras themselves” (La Vigne et al, 2011, p. 3). These costs may make it ineffective for less advanced countries to implement the use of CCTV systems.

Should victims’ addresses be publicly listed and identified using mapping software? Why? What kind of breach of ethics does this represent? Why?

Absolutely not. A victim has the basic right of privacy. However, there are two situations in which courts have ruled other issues may override that right. The first is “a criminal defendant's exercise of his constitutional rights” for defense, and the second is the “media's First Amendment right
of access to criminal proceedings” (Ford and Nembach, 1992, pp. 206-207). In the process of crime mapping, the information required does not need the victim's specifics, instead relying on the crime's information. The exceptions raised by Ford and Nembach do not apply for mapping, and thus the victim's right of privacy has no reason to be broached. An interesting comparison of public need to know vs. victims need for privacy may be found at http://mediacrimevictimguide.com/right.html, “The Victim’s Right to Privacy Versus the Public’s Right to Know” although it does not add to this question.

EurukAlert. (2004, July 21). Technological advances enhance video surveillance equipment progress. Retrieved June 11, 2015 from http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2004-07/ti-tae072104.php

Ford, M. and Nembach, P. (1992) The victim's right to privacy: Imperfect protection from the criminal justice system. Journal of Civil Rights and Economic Development: Vol. 8: Iss. 1. Retrieved June 11, 2015 from http://scholarship.law.stjohns.edu/jcred/vol8/iss1/11

LaVigne, N., Lowry, S., Markman, J., and Dwyer, A. (2011). Evaluating the use of public surveillance cameras for crime control and prevention—A summary. The Urban Institute. Retrieved June 11, 2015 from http://www.urban.org/sites/default/files/alfresco/publication-pdfs/412401-Evaluating-the-Use-of-Public-Surveillance-Cameras-for-Crime-Control-and-Prevention-A-Summary.PDF

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