When you pay your taxes, check out a library book or work out at the city fitness center, you’re likely on camera.
Local governments aren’t trying to sneakily record you. In fact, cameras are propped in obvious, easy-to-see spots because they want you to know you’re being recorded. Behind the scenes, no one is usually watching the video being taken of parking lots, building entrances or hallways. But it is being saved in case it’s needed later, with some governments keeping months of old video before it’s deleted.
As security cameras get smaller, work wirelessly and record digital files instead of recording on tapes, more cameras are being considered to protect workers and the people visiting public locations. Digital formats can allow months of video to be stored on hard drives. Some cameras can be accessed from other buildings and can even send text messages to staff if something unusual comes into the frame.