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Using Video Recorders on Client's Property. Any Problems?

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  • SecTrainer
    replied
    Can't think why there'd be any prohibition against it if it's just video, but you'd better be prepared for the consequences. You might have search warrants executed on your site, be called to testify as to the authenticity and integrity of the recording at trial, have your own DVR seized as evidence (although unlikely), and of course there could be reprisals of a particularly unpleasant kind.

    I'm not saying don't do it, but just know what you might be getting into.

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  • gixxer32404
    replied
    Anyone ever videotaped drug dealers or other criminal activity on a client's site? Anyone ever done this and given it to local LEO's?? This is as security not as an pi? Any problems doing this? (Florida) anyone know of??

    Leave a comment:


  • davis002
    replied
    I was thumbing through the latest Streicher's catalog I got in the mail, and I found a new body-worn PVR. It appears to be the size and shape of a pager.



    They make a consumer version and a LE version, but I really don't see much difference between the two (other than some special software with the LE version).

    Streicher's is selling the LE version for $699.99

    Check out the website for more info... I must say it looks interesting.

    http://www.vievu.com/

    Leave a comment:


  • SecTrainer
    replied
    Originally posted by bpdblue View Post
    So the audio taping of bad guys conspiring to commit burglaries, would seem like a no brainer good thing to do, yet (in California, at least) would be a FELONY to do.

    It just does not seem right, but what can you do?
    1. Get real high-def video gear, and...

    2. Learn to read lips.

    I'm inserting a smiley-face, but if you have video and can read the lips of someone saying "We're gonna hit this joint Saturday night", or saying to a security officer "I'm gonna kill you", you would NOT be guilty of a felony. This statement is still speech, and is still being "intercepted" by means of electronic technology...but using video technology it's legal whereas using audio technology it becomes a felony in your state?

    Hooboy! This is so TOTALLY weird that now I have to insert a frownie-face.
    Last edited by SecTrainer; 01-08-2008, 11:25 AM.

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  • bpdblue
    replied
    Some things are just messed up.

    SecTrainer, as usual, you make a great point.

    Unfortunatly, the way laws are written, and are screwed up even more by court decisions, have often left the suspect with more, or better rights than us average good folk.

    Points I refer to are situations in courts are where good people have to defend themselves against the bad guys for using force against being attacked, or burglars suing building owners for falling through the building owners roof skylights while committing a burglary at night.

    These are unbelievable situations that should not be allowed to go to court, but do, and the bad guys can win.

    So the audio taping of bad guys conspiring to commit burglaries, would seem like a no brainer good thing to do, yet (in California, at least) would be a FELONY to do.

    It just does not seem right, but what can you do?

    Leave a comment:


  • SecTrainer
    replied
    This is more just for discussion.

    The "Joe Nobody" mentioned by PM not only can record video, but audio as well. You and I? Oh, that's different! Even if we can record video, audio is another matter.

    With the caveat regarding legal advice in mind, I am curious, especially in "two-party-consent" states, how anyone can assert a right to "privacy" when it pertains to their audible statements made in public or quasi-public places? How do they have any "reasonable expectation of privacy" (the legal principle on which "consent" is based) in such circumstances?

    I come onto your property. I steal something, or in some other way attract the attention of your security officers. When they approach, I threaten to kill them. Just what is my "expectation of privacy" regarding my utterances that would "reasonably" permit me to assert a privilege or to raise a claim of invasion of privacy if my words are recorded without my "prior consent"?

    Putting it another way: Both the things I do and things I say in public (both my movements and audible speech) are "behaviors". Why can both types of behavior not be recorded if they take place within a space where there should be NO expectation of privacy?

    You and I go to case an upscale jewelry store, planning to rob it next week. The camera picks us up as we enter, and everything we do while we're there. What cannot legally be picked up is the audio. Even if it seems unlikely that we would say anything incriminating in the store, remember that most perps are stupid, careless, amateurish, and/or arrogant. They make mistakes, and some of the mistakes they make have to do with their speech - meaning what they say, where they say it, and who they say it to. So sure, if we're typical criminals we might just make incriminating or suspicious statements while we're scoping the place: "Check the rent-a-cop...no gun" or "Can you see the safe?"...etc. If audible, you'd be interested in such statements but nope, you can't.

    Self-serve gas station. Your video picks me up as I exit the passenger side and gas up the car. What you can't be picking up on a mike is what I say to the driver as I get out of the car: "Okay, get ready to split the second I jump back into the car." Knowing you can't hear me, I say this loudly enough to be heard. Maybe it's "just" a gas drive-away, but maybe I'm going to rob you before I jump back into the car. Oh well...it's all good. Gas station clerks are a dime a dozen anyway.

    I don't get it, so 'splain it to me, Lucy!
    Last edited by SecTrainer; 01-06-2008, 08:03 AM.

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  • Bill Warnock
    replied
    Seems a shame that Joe Nobody can use a camcorder and video anything he wants and be at the top of the news for weeks, wreaking havoc upon entire cities and departments while highly qualified people have to seek legal advice and dot all i's and cross all t's just to do a job no one else seems to want to do properly in my city.


    PM Protection, while Joe Nobody can carry on with his or her camcorder, what security does will no doubt be subject to intense scrutiny and may be subject to forensic examination and in-turn criminal or civil sanctions against one or more parties.
    Enjoy the day,
    Bill

    Leave a comment:


  • PM Protection
    replied
    Hi,

    A few more details.

    This is a procedure that only I would be performing while on special details, I wouldn't have 30 Mini DV's out in the field in other words.

    I would be using Min DV tapes with the highest quality Camcorder (not too impressed with any HDD Recorder yet) and would use my best judgement on whether the scenario was quality video evidence or not prior to recording. I quit doing any type of "nightclub" years ago, can't stand them.

    So to bring this up to date.

    Signage is paramount.
    Back-Up and Archiving is crucial
    Verbally announcing the recording (such as the FCC landline rules) might suffice.
    My boss can't fire me , he and I are one and the same.
    Legal advice is highly suggested
    This just might be a good idea?

    Great answers, anything else please feel free to add. The audio part is what is concerning me. Threats of death being denied later when LE arrives etc.

    Seems a shame that Joe Nobody can use a camcorder and video anything he wants and be at the top of the news for weeks, wreaking havoc upon entire cities and departments while highly qualified people have to seek legal advice and dot all i's and cross all t's just to do a job no one else seems to want to do properly in my city.

    Leave a comment:


  • SecTrainer
    replied
    Originally posted by N. A. Corbier View Post
    Wikipedia, that bastion of reliable information, says SarbOx is only applicable to publicly traded companies. One can only hope.
    Wikipedia is, unfortunately, WRONG; this is a common misunderstanding about SarbOx. The reach of SarbOx extends far beyond the "public company" or even privately-held corporations.

    I'll quote here from the link above:

    Sarbanes-Oxley expands criminal liability to privately held companies

    Do you know that the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) does not only apply to publicly traded companies?

    ....it is a crime for anyone to corruptly alter, destroy, mutilate or hide a record with the intent to impair the object's integrity or availability for use in an official proceeding. The penalty for this crime includes fines or imprisonment up to 20 years. The same criminal penalties apply to anyone who otherwise obstructs, influences or impedes any official proceeding, or attempts to do so.

    Congress may have been motivated by perceived Enron/WorldCom conduct, but they omitted any requirement that this misconduct occur in the corporate context in order to sustain a prosecution.

    Another section of SOX provides for the same penalties in any case in which anyone "knowingly" alters or destroys records, or falsifies records, with the intent to impede, obstruct or influence the investigation or proper administration of any matter involving departments or agencies of the federal government."


    These provisions (especially the word "knowingly") would seem to limit liability to what an individual (or organization) does with information after becoming aware that it might be material to a legal action. Not so. The presumption extends to what an individual "should reasonably know might be material" and even to the deliberate destruction of information that an individual "would reasonably believe" WOULD BE injurious, even if there is no present threat of a legal action at that time.

    For instance, while perusing your company's email system archives looking for something, you notice that someone in the company has sent an email to another employee that might constitute evidence of collusion to commit fraud in connection with their positions in the organization. Assume that there is no action on the horizon, and you have not been served with any subpoenas. Can you delete that email "prospectively"? Absolutely not! In other words, you may not destroy anything even IN ANTICIPATION that it might be incriminating if discovered.

    According to Federal Sentencing Guidelines, in the scenario above, what might save the organization and its executives if a criminal action should arise later, would be taking corrective or mitigative actions IMMEDIATELY upon the discovery of that email, rather than deleting it. This means, of course, launching your own internal investigation, taking disciplinary action against the employees, making restitution to anyone found to have been defrauded by these employees, reporting the matter to authorities AND cooperating with their investigation of the matter. If you were to do that, the court is not only permitted, but directed, to take that into account in determining the criminal penalty that your organization and its executives might face.

    The worst thing you can ever do is to cover something up, or destroy evidence. This has always been so in our legal system, not because of SarbOx. What SarbOx does is to vastly expand the legal reach of the notions of what constitutes "coverup" and "destruction of evidence" in the electronic age, imposing the affirmative obligation to ensure that corporate policies and practices do not even inadvertently result in information being destroyed. And, the presumption exists that electronic storage of large amounts of information for long periods of time is not unreasonably burdensome, so it is no longer acceptable to say "We only keep emails for 30 days, Your Honor."

    To CYA, AEF...and if you know or suspect that you have evidence of malfeasance in your possession, whether electronic or otherwise, ACT on it, and REVEAL it. There's just no other way to protect your organization.
    Last edited by SecTrainer; 01-05-2008, 08:53 AM.

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  • NRM_Oz
    replied
    Just curious as to the quality of the audio that is going to be recorded. Whilst most audio recording through camcorders, my event video filming days showed me the power of a shotgun mike with a 30 degree field of recording. If we are talking a night club or anywhere with loud music you have nothing worthwhile unless it is post edited by an audio engineer. I arrested a bloke for theft of a patrons wallet (he did it right in front of me) and had to have them shut the music off so I could tell him he was under arrest.

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  • N. A. Corbier
    replied
    Wikipedia, that bastion of reliable information, says SarbOx is only applicable to publicly traded companies. One can only hope.

    Leave a comment:


  • SecTrainer
    replied
    SarbOx certainly has made an industry out of data mining and mass storage devices, since even the most simple order to produce emails can yield what would be the paper equivalent of multiple boxcar-loads of messages to be reviewed for relevant content. And, naturally, a whole consulting industry has sprung up around SarbOx compliance.

    ...and no, there's no small business exemption that I am aware of, although I think there might have been some additional grace period for compliance.

    So, there's only one thing you can do now: To CYA, AEF (archive everything forever).

    And even archiving is just the beginning. The problem actually goes further than that. First, there are the "backup" files that many applications like Microsoft Word create. It can be very challenging to find some of these as some applications operate in almost "stealth" mode in this regard. You've got the email with the final Word document attachment archived off the mail server, but big whoop. What about the "drafts" and "backups" sitting out on the author's computer?

    Second, there are other "temporary" files created by various applications. These may be overwritten at some point, but many are persistent enough to be worrisome and could be relevant to a subpoena. Think "Internet Explorer", for instance. So, if the company publishes an intranet database and I access it via IE to run a query, I now have a potentially discoverable file in my browsing file cache.

    Making the whole "temporary/cache/backup file" situation worse is that sometimes this stuff isn't even stored as a "file"...it's sitting around in "slack space", which can be thought of in simple terms as unused space "between" files.

    Third, there is the whole "distributed platform" model, where bits of information that might be relevant to a subpoena are scattered around in shared apps on potentially hundreds of computers. Some of these computers might actually be "smartphones", PDAs, etc.

    ...and then, of course, there are all of the portable devices like memory sticks, pocket drives, etc.

    Fourth, got IM? You could be caching messages "by default", or someone you're messaging might be. Is an employee using PM or posting relevant articles on a Web forum like this one? This could all be discoverable.

    You'd think there would be some "reasonable limits" to what you might be required to produce, but Nate is right about RAM becoming discoverable recently...and if they can ask you to produce RAM images, they can ask for anything. (Actually, the precursor to the demand for RAM images was the demand to produce ROM BIOS/setup information in cases involving computer forensics.)

    The problem is that you get a subpoena asking for "all information pertinent to this inquiry, whether in written or electronic format, that is now in possession of (YourCompany)", it won't be good enough to say "We deleted it (you can't, post SarbOx)...it was overwritten (go directly to jail, do not pass Go)...we overlooked data stored there (tough turkey, Turkey)...or in that format (tell it to the hand)..." etc. If you don't find and produce the requested information, excuses won't cut it. You'll be sleeping with the fishes, legally speaking, and may be liable not only for the SarbOx violation, but for contempt of court with respect to the subpoena.

    It's a very messy situation for sure!
    Last edited by SecTrainer; 01-04-2008, 12:29 PM.

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  • N. A. Corbier
    replied
    SarbOx scares the hell out of me, and if you're a small business owner, it should scare the hell out of you, too.

    I do not know if there is a "small business" exemption from it. I don't believe there is. As SecTrainer said, are you prepared to answer a subpoena for emails? Or your internal forums? Or voice mails?

    Related, someone successfully got RAM (Computer Memory) admissible. As in, you need to produce a snapshot of your computer's RAM. In that case, it was against a file sharing group (A torrent site) that tried to get around the reporting requirements by simply never saving anything to disk. So, the RIAA and MPAA's lawyers said, "Fine, we want the data in the RAM!"

    Did I mention that electronic discovery scares the hell out of me, simply because of how much crap you have to keep around, in archival quality formats, till the end of time?

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  • SecTrainer
    replied
    Originally posted by Bill Warnock View Post
    Check with your company's legal department first and hopefully they will check with competent jurisdictional legalists on the proper use and installation of CCTV, placement and wording of required signage. Legalists should also mandate time period recorded material must be maintained and where.
    Now comes the real challenge, keeping the system up and running and running well. Ensure all your equipment is buffered by quality power conditioning equipment and have property management conduct electrical grounding and bonding surveys. Don't be surprised if you see their eyes glaze over when you make this request. I stress the latter portion because of singed tail feathers.
    Regardless of the temptation, never install dummy cameras. You'll loose more than just tail feathers, it will be the part those feathers are attached to.
    Enjoy the day,
    Bill
    Excellent points, Bill. It cannot be stressed enough that once you DO start recording, you will be expected to be able to PRODUCE recordings if they are subpoenaed in a legal action. It will not satisfy the courts to come back and say "We don't have them". (The CIA is now embroiled in potential criminal liabilities for having destroyed recordings, but it is no better to say you lost them or never archived them, either.)

    In other words, you can't just start recording. You will need policies and procedures, as well as the necessary equipment, for capturing and archiving the recordings, including the ability to index, search and retrieve recordings if they should be demanded in a legal action. I would not be surprised if your corporate attorney told you that you would need to save recordings for as long as 5 to 7 years.

    With the passage of Sarbanes-Oxley and other similar laws in recent years, all entities that use electronic means to record, communicate, or capture information - whether it's by email, instant messaging, Web forums, video, etc. - are required to archive and, if necessary, produce such information. This is a very big deal in the legal world now, and if you will search the phrase "electronic discovery" on Google you'll see the enormous amount of literature and conversation that is going on about this subject. You'll have no trouble finding 1000-page legal tomes that have been published on electronic discovery - i.e., how the lawyer should advise his corporate client on saving information, and, on the other side, how the laywer should file demands for discovery, how to find what he needs in massive piles of electronic data that the demand will produce, etc. Big, big area of law now.
    Last edited by SecTrainer; 01-03-2008, 08:31 AM.

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  • jer6141
    replied
    Just speaking from my companies S.O.P., it is punishable by termination if any personnel uses any recording device without an executive from the company giving permission. This doesnt apply if the contract wants things taped, like having a DVR in a contract provided car or cameras on the property but an individual officer carrying any type of recording device is a huge thing for us.

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