Recently in the news, there has been an influx of chatter about the breaches of personal privacy with regards to video surveillance operating at a lower mainland doctor’s office. Many businesses use video surveillance for a variety of reasons so it’s important to know how to protect yourself from a privacy violation. Here are 5 key strategies to help you be successful with your video surveillance system:
#1. Make sure to have proper and adequate signage posted publically advising of video surveillance being obtained, especially when audio is collected as well. It’s a serious privacy violation that the public must be made aware of when they enter your premises. Also, keep in mind they also have the right to view any footage obtained of them, if requested.
#2. Be sure you have a policy in place that points out that the recordings are only kept on file for a maximum of three weeks. This way, should any incidents occur and the video footage is required then that footage will be stored in accordance with the laws or as advised by legal counsel pertaining to said incident.
#3. A policy also needs to be in place that advises that the security systems are compliant with all governing bodies. Additionally, it’s advisable to have a public notice mentioning the policy, and that can be posted in a common area, such as a lobby or waiting room, for the general public’s knowledge.
#4. There are many good reasons to have a professionally installed video surveillance in your business and it’s a good idea to be clear about why you are choosing to implement it. Not only does it detour any criminal intent, it protects the employees and business assets in case of an unexpected incident such as a burglary, damage, aggressive patrons, flooding or fire, and/or vandalism. It’s also often used to monitor staff and to ensure the businesses day-to-day operations and life safety policies are being followed. With this in mind, it’s important to document this detail in an Employment or Work Site Security Policy so that employees are fully aware there is a video surveillance system in place and can sign off on their acknowledgement and agreement to such.
#5. If required or you feel the need to confirm if your video surveillance system’s SOP’s and procedures are meeting the necessary requirements, you can hire a reputable security consultant to conduct a review.
When it comes to implementing any new system, it’s paramount to inform the public of any video surveillance so that they can have the freedom of choice to decide whether or not they are comfortable with their information being gathered for the purposes posted. This protects you from any privacy violations while preserving the integrity of your security surveillance system for its intended purposes. You have the right to protect yourself, your employees, and your business. Just be sure to be transparent about it to avoid unnecessary hassles.