29 May 2017
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How Cost Effective is Public Area CCTV?

Public Area CCTV - The Third Forensic Investigation discipline!

How do the 3 forensic disciplines compare on a cost basis?

For some time now CCTV analysis has been compared with DNA and Fingerprints as the Third Forensic Investigation discipline.

It is therefore highly appropriate that the current Interim CCTV Regulator, appointed by the previous Government is also the Forensic Science Regulator.

In July 2010 Her Majesty's Inspector of Constabulary in his Annual Report compared the 'cost of detection' by DNA and Fingerprints for each of the Police Forces in England and Wales, with some very interesting results.

From a survey currently still in progress (current results are are from about 10% of the Local Authority Public Area CCTV Systems in the UK, and represent about 10% of the population of the UK, but possibly it is currently weighted to the larger systems).

We have compared the cost per recorded incident for a wide variety of Local Authority Public Area CCTV Systems with the DNA and Fingerprint results.

We must point out, that these will not be the overall total cost of the detection by CCTV, only the costs incurred by the Local Authority in operating the system which often includes reviewing recordings and preparing working and master copies for further Police investigation, as we have no access to data relating to the Police input in the more forensic analysis for identification, and detailed evidence.

 Even with the caveats above, these results are startling, in terms of the value for money of Public Area CCTV systems in identifying incidents and gaining evidence.

In terms of value for money for the public who pay for such systems through their rates please visit the page 'How much does CCTV Cost the public, on the 'Exploding the Myths' flyout menu.

This chart will be updated as additional survey results become available (Latest 12/09/2011)


Comparison of costs per incident recorded by public area CCTV and detections by DNA and Fingerprints £



 Public Area CCTV

Highest Cost 




 Average Cost




 Lowest Cost




• (145) By Peter Fry, 12 Sep 2011, 14:10

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