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No cameras will be installed on playgrounds

30 November 2009 / 14:11:57  GRReporter
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The Privacy Protection Services rejected the Athens Municipality application to install cameras in children playgrounds. The installed cameras over the offices of the different parties, are also illegal because they do not record only party employees and members but also people passing by.

The Athens Municipality wanted to install cameras over more than 147 children playgrounds, because monthly it receives about 80 citizen complaints for destroyed playground properties.

The Privacy Protection Services conclude that given the game is one of the key tools for the development of the child's personality, cameras should not be installed on playgrounds because we do not know what consequences there may be on the personal development of children after processing the data. The Services quoted an issued by the EU report, which confirms that there is danger to limit the “freedom” concept in underage children if they believe it is normal to be recorded.

Despite all the Privacy Protection Services decided that cameras will be installed on ten children playgrounds and they will record only at night, when children are not playing. This is a pilot program, which will be tested for one year and after that the Athens Municipality will have to present a report with comparative data, so that it can be established whether the cameras give results. Also the Privacy Protection Services said that cameras will be installed as a last resort, after the municipalities have tried all other measures – for example, repairing playground fences and putting lamps. Camera recorded data will be erased after 24 hours and citizens will be informed that there are cameras. Similar decision was made regarding cameras in front of banks, which record people’s faces.

The Privacy Protection Services temporarily forbid the live webcams, which are installed in front of the offices of two of the biggest parties. On one hand it is legal to record public figures but on the other it is illegal to record regular people going in and out of the party building and people just passing by, without blurring their faces, said chairman of the Privacy Protection Services Hristos Geraris.

Also the Privacy Protection Services decided that the Institute for Immigration Policies will not be authorized to collect personal emigrant data by keeping in file their gender, level of education, income, savings, health data, employment and whether they have entered the country legally, in which insurance fund they are making deposits.  

Tags: CCTV playgrounds cameras privacy protection
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