CCTV on the up

Published on Thursday, 29 September 2011 11:42
Posted by Scott Buckler

A new report, commissioned by CCTV and surveillance vendor Storage Options, has revealed a seismic shift in attitudes towards the use of surveillance equipment in the workplace as experiences of high crime, the recent riots, and the impact of Government funding cuts strike home

The study questioned hundreds of business owners  across the country into safety and security in the workplace, and despite the UK’s perceived ‘Big Brother’ surveillance culture, it seems that attitudes towards CCTV is moving towards acceptance and a common sense narrative – a trend matched by ever-increasing demand for Storage Options’ services.

Alarmingly, 44% of businesses questioned in the study admitted to being the victim of crime before, with more than a third – 36% - having been targeted more than four times. The top items stolen from the workplace emerged as computers (13%) stock or products (12%) or mobile phones (6%).

When asked what would help their staff feel safer, more than a third (36%) said a security guard, followed by CCTV (27%), coming above alarm systems (21%). And despite the majority of businesses – 65% - now having some form of CCTV system in place, almost half (45%) admitted wanting MORE security around their premises, with two fifths (40%) feeling their security set up was insufficient.  

The study also revealed concerns over government spending cuts, with more than half (55%) of businesses admitting this made them feel more of a security risk, and 37% feeling this could compromise the police’s ability to do their job properly. Worryingly, the majority of people questioned – 65% - claimed they would consider some form of direct action if their business was broken into.

Paul Evison, marketing manager for Storage Options commented: “The last few years have seen a public debate around CCTV as an intrusion on civil liberties, and while in some extreme instances this could be the case, it is refreshing to see the emergence of a common sense debate. It seems that a combination of factors – from the key role CCTV played in identifying and prosecuting suspects during the UK riots, to first-hand experience of crime and public spending cuts – has caused this big shift.

“Since we entered the CCTV market in May this year, we’ve seen our growth expectations exceeded, and we’ve even brought forward plans to expand our range to capitalise on demand, as more and more businesses seem to be recognising the importance of keeping their staff safe and fostering a positive work environment. While vigilante style action may seem appealing at the time, it is definitely not the right approach. We would always recommend that business owners leave any genuine security problems to the experts or the local authorities.”


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