Public space CCTV: research findings

This report presents findings from a mixed methods research project commissioned to better understand the provision and use of public space CCTV in Scotland.


Angermair, T., C. Sand Fink, & A. Langeland Knudsen. (2022).

‘Denmark’, The Privacy, Data Protection and Cybersecurity Law Review, Ed. 9. [Accessed 4th June 2023].

Ariel, B., A. Sutherland, D. Henstock, J. Young, P. Drover, J. Sykes, S. Megicks, and R. Henderson. (2017). “Contagious accountability” a global multisite randomized controlled trial on the effect of police body-worn cameras on citizens’ complaints against the police. Criminal Justice and Behavior. 44(2): 293-316.

Ashby, M.P.J. (2017). The Value of CCTV Surveillance Cameras as an Investigative Tool: An Empirical Analysis. European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research. 23: 441-459.

Bannister, J., S. Mackenzie, and P. Norris. (2009). Public Space CCTV in Scotland: Results of a National Survey of Scotland's Local Authorities. Vol. 03/09, Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research.

Biometrics and Surveillance Camera Commissioner.. (2022). ‘Press release’, GOV.UK. OVUK Available at: [Accessed on 14th April 2023].

Biometrics and Surveillance Camera Commissioner.. (2023a). ‘The use of overt surveillance camera systems in public places by police forces in England and Wales: An assessment of compliance with section 33(1) of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and the Surveillance Camera Code of Practice’. Available at: [Accessed 17th April 2023].

Biometrics and Surveillance Camera Commissioner.. (2023b). ‘Initial analysis of the 2022 Local Authority survey of the use of surveillance camera technology’. Available at: [Accessed 17th April 2023].

Biometrics and Surveillance Camera Commissioner. (2023c). Annual Report March 2021 – March 2022. Available at: [Accessed 17th April 2023].

Big Brother Watch. (2016). ‘Are They Still Watching?’. Available at: Still-Watching.pdf [Accessed 17th April 2023].

Big Brother Watch. (2020). ‘Big Brother Watch Briefing on Facial Recognition Surveillance’. Available at: in a rural area:surveillance-June-2020.pdf) [Accessed 17th April 2023].

Blume, P. (2007). CCTV Surveillance: Something wrotten in the State of Denmark?. Computer Law Review International.LRI. 8(6): 161-166.

Burrows, J. (1978). ‘The impact of closed circuit television on crime in the London underground’ in P. Mayhew, R. Clarke, J. Burrows, J. Hough, & S.Winchester (eds.), Crime in Public View (Home Office Research Study, #49). London: Her Majesty’s Stationary Office.

Carmona, M., C. de Magalhães, L. Hammond, R. Blum, and D. Yang. (2004). Living Places: Caring for Quality. London: Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. Available at: [Accessed 15th April 2023].

Cerezo, A. (2013). CCTV and Crime Displacement: A quasi-experimental evaluation. European Journal of Criminology. 10(2): 222-236.

Clarion Security Systems. (2022). How Many CCTV Cameras in London? Available at: [Accessed 17th February 2023].

Denmark Statistics. (2023). 'Population figures’. Avaliable at: [Accessed 15th May 2023].

Det Kriminalpræventative Råd [The Danish Crime Prevention Council]. (2001).

‘Tvovervågning – mellem forebyggelse og krænkelse.’ [TV-surveillance – between prevention and violation.]’

Ditton, J., and E. Short. (1998). ‘Evaluating Scotland’s first town centre CCTV scheme’ in C. Norris, J. Moran & G. Armstrong (eds.), Surveillance, closed circuit television and social control. 155-173. Aldershot: Ashgate

Evans, J. and P. Jones. (2011). The walking interview: Methodology, mobility and place. Applied Geography. 31(2): 849-858., (2018 [2021]). ‘Overvågning i samfundet’ [Surveillance in society]. Available at:: [Accessed 3rd September 2022].

Foreign Affairs Committee. (2021). ‘Never Again: The UK’s Responsibility to Act on Atrocities in Xinjiang and Beyond’, Available at: [Accessed on 14th April 2023].

Frey, J.H. and A. Fontana. (1991). The group interview in social research. The Social Science Journal. 28(2): 175-187

Hall, S., Critcher, C., Jefferson, T., Clarke, J. & Roberts, B (1978). Policing the crisis: mugging, the state, and law and order, Macmillan, London.

Heaton, J. (2022). “Pseudonyms“ are used throughout”: A footnote, unpacked. Qualitative Inquiry. 28(1): 123-132.

Home Office (2013). Surveillance Camera Code of Practice. London: TSO.

Home Office (2014). ‘Home Office announces new Surveillance Camera Commissioner’. Available at [Accessed 15th February 2023].

Home Office. (2020). ‘Launch of Safer Streets Fund’. ovuk. Available at: [Accessed 15th April 2023].

Justice Analytical Services (JAS).(.2009). The Effectiveness of Public Space CCTV: A review of recent published evidence regarding the impact of CCTV on crime. Edinburgh: Scottish Government.Government. Available at: [Accessed: 17th April 2023].

Leslie, D. (2020). Understanding bias in facial recognition technologies: an explainer. The Alan Turing Institute.

Li, J., A. Dang and Y. Song. (2022). Defining the ideal public space: A perspective from the publicness. Journal of Urban Management.11(4): 479-487.

Mahmood, Z., N. Muhammad, N. Bibi, and T. Ali. (2017). A review on state-of-the-art face recognition approaches. Fractals. 25(2).

Miles, M. (2021). Gender, Safety and Space: From Representation to Co-Creation. Sydney: Monash University.

Ministry of Justice [Justitsministeriet]. (2019). ‘Tryghed og sikkerhed i det offentlige rum’. Available at: rum.pdf [Accessed 3rd November 2022].

National Records of Scotland (NRS). (2022a). Mid-2021 Population Estimates. Available at: Mid-2021 Population Estimates Scotland | National Records of Scotland ( [Accessed 12th september 2023].

National Records of Scotland (NRS). (2022b). '91% of Scotland’s population live in 2% of its land area'. Available at: [Accessed 17th April 2023].

Office of National Statistic (ONS). (2022). Population estimates for the UK, England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland: mid-2021. Available at: [Accessed 19th May 2023].

Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner North Wales. (2022). ‘North Wales shares in multi-million pound Home Office fund to make streets safer’. Available at: [Accessed 14th April 2023].

Palace, M., R. Frankel, N. Shortland, W. Jinag, B. May, A. Jones and J. Starkey. (2023). CCTV operators’ perspectives on protecting soft target terrorist locations in England. Crime Prevention and Community Safety. 25: 82-93.

Piza, E. L., B. C. Welsh, D. P. Farrington and A. L. Thomas. (2019). CCTV surveillance for crime prevention: A 40-year systematic review with meta-analysis. Criminology and Public Policy. 18(1): 135-159.

Police Scotland. (2021). ‘Cyber Kiosk Management Information’. Available at: [Accessed 15th Feb 2023]. (2021). Available at: [Accessed 3rd September 2022].

Ratcliffe, J.H. and E.R. Groff. (2019). A longitudinal quasi-experimental study of violence and disorder impacts of urban CCTV camera clusters. Criminal Justice Review. 44(2): 148-164.

Rigsrevisionen [The National Audit Office]. (2021). ‘‘Polities patruljering og overvågningskameraer [The Polices’ Patrolling and Surveillance Cameras]’. Available at: [Accessed 3rd Nov 2022].

Sampson, F. (2023). ‘The Commissioner discusses the new era for live facial recognition after the Coronation’ [blog], Surveillance Camera Commissioner’s Office, 17 May. Available at: [Accessed 19th May 2023].

Scottish Cities Alliance. (2016). Smart Cities Scotland Blueprint. Glasgow: Scottish Cities Alliance. Available at:

Scottish Community Safety Network (SCSN). (2019). Public Space CCTV in Scotland: Current landscape and future opportunities. Available at: [Accessed 17th April 2023].

Scottish Government. (2011). ‘A National Strategy for Public Space CCTV in Scotland’. Available at:

Scottish Government. (2022). ‘Scottish Government Urban Rural Classification 2020’. GovScot. Available at: [Accessed 10th January 2023].

Scottish Government. (2023). Digital evidence pilot, 7 March. Available at:

Security Industry Authority/GOV.UK. (2020). ‘Find out if you need a SIA license’, GOV.UK. Available at: [Accessed April 3rd 2023].

Senior, A.(2009). Protecting Privacy in Video Surveillance. London: Springer. ‘Tax rates’. Available at:

[Accessed 10th January 2023].

Skogan, W. G. (2019). The future of CCTV. Criminology and Public Policy. 18(1): 161-166.

Smith, A. (2015). ‘Not-Seeing: State Surveillance, Settler Colonialism, And Gender Violence’in R. E. Dubrofsky & S. A. Magnet (eds.), Feminist Surveillance Studies. Duke University Press. 21-38.

Statista. (2021). 'Population of Scotland from 1971-2021'. Available at: :

[Accessed 15th May 2023]

Surette, J. (2005). Thinking Eye: Pros and Cons of Second Generation CCTV Surveillance Systems. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies and Management. 28(1): 152-173.

Surveillance Camera Commissioner. (2017). A National Surveillance Camera Strategy for England and Wales. Available at:

[Accessed 19th May 2023].

Webster, C. W., D. Miranda, and C. Leleux. (2022). ‘Evidence Review into Public Experience and Confidence of Body Worn Video in a Policing Context’ [UoS BWV Final June 22]. Police Scotland/Scottish Police Authority/SIPR.

Wiecek, C. and A.R. Sætnan. (2002). ‘Geographies of visibility. Zooming in on video surveillance systems in Oslo and Copenhagen’ (No. 5). UrbanEye:

Working Paper.



Back to top