A new report by the Surveillance Camera Awareness Network (SCAN) at Queen's University shows that Canadians believe surveillance cameras promote safety, but their perceptions don't match the actual evidence. The first of its kind in Canada, A Report on Camera Surveillance in Canada will be used as background to help structure new federal surveillance legislation.
"There is little or no evidence that surveillance deters crime," says David Lyon, coordinator of the report and director of the school's new Surveillance Studies Centre. "Media such as TV police shows and crime stoppers promote the perception that cameras are more important than they really are."
The report looks at the rapid growth of surveillance in Canadian society based on studies about:
- The lack of Canadian legislation addressing public camera surveillance
- Camera surveillance as big business
- An exploration of camera operators
- Research on public opinions about camera surveillance
- Camera surveillance as one of the legacies of hosting the Olympic Games
- Camera surveillance in Ottawa taxicabs
- Camera surveillance in shopping malls
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