Security Cameras and Crime

Security cameras can prevent and help solve crime.

Security cameras, also known as CCTV, have long been a big debate. While some dislike the loss of privacy that comes with being surveyed, the truth of the matter is that security cameras can help prevent and solve crimes. In a place like New York City, that’s a big deal.

The places where security cameras would go up is called “public” anyway, since when you go there everyone can see you—cameras just provide footage of what happens there. The installation of security cameras has helped the police and FBI solve some major crimes in the past. Doesn’t that make it worth it?

It seems that more and more people are realizing the potential value of security cameras. Just recently, the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) installed and updated 73 cameras at NYCHA residences. With just under half a million people living in NYCHA, security cameras will provide protection for many residents.

“The safety and security of our residents is of great importance to NYCHA, and installing CCTV cameras deters crime and enhances the quality of life of our residents,” said NYCHA board chairman John B. Rhea. The cameras will also help to catch criminals who have already broken the law.

For example, in 2010, police arrested the infamous Times Square Bomber, who had attempted to attach and detonate a bomb beneath a car. Luckily, a nearby vendor alerted police to smoke coming from the car and the device was disabled before it could explode. Investigators then began searching for a suspect. One of the ways they searched was by using CCTV surveillance videos to see what the suspect had been wearing and where he had gone.

More recently on our minds is the Boston Marathon Bombing. Two pressure cooker bombs exploded near the finish line of the race, killing three and wounding nearly a hundred others. Again, police and other investigators were able to use security camera footage from the business and city cameras to pinpoint suspects and begin their search.

In both these cases, security cameras played a role in finding and capturing criminals who could have otherwise gotten away. Of course, there were many other factors that went into their successful captures, but security cameras certainly played their role.


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