Everything To See Here


Limerick’s CCTV project has technology to record the registration of every passing car 24 hours a day

Jess Casey, in the Limerick Leader, reports:

“Serious questions” remain unanswered in relation to a controversial €500,000 smart CCTV project, that has the technology to record the registration of every passing car 24 hours a day, and is installed across 14 Limerick towns and villages.

Limerick City and County Council (LCCC) plans to shortly roll out its Smart CCTV scheme to 13 new locations, although it has yet to receive the findings of a special investigation by the Data Protection Commissioner into its use of the scheme.

…When contacted by the Limerick Leader, a LCCC spokesperson said that CCTV systems in all 14 towns are currently recording footage live in test mode. 

An Garda Siochana can access and download this footage “for the purpose of securing public order”, the spokesperson added.

‘Serious questions’ hang over €500k smart CCTV scheme in Limerick (Limerick Leader)

Pic: Limerick.ie

23 thoughts on “Everything To See Here

  1. paul

    If they can connect this up with speed cameras and traffic light systems they’ll pay back that 500k in fines in a year.

    Do so across Dublin city and they’d pay it back in a few months.

    1. Mickey Twopints

      Not really, since this €500k white elephant isn’t GDPR compliant it’s just an expensive ornament, and a testament to the crass stupidity and incompetence of Limerick C&CoCo.

      1. Ian-O

        My understanding is that everybody who passes is fully entitled, under law, to get a copy of any footage of their vehicle.

        I am not sure how much it costs for a copy of this, but I would imagine it would be a loss maker for the council.

        But unless they have been living under a rock for a past few years they should already know that.

        1. Cian

          Are they recording (and saving) the full video from all these cameras? or are they just capturing the licence plates (and either not saving the footage, or deleting after x hours)?

          If it is the former, then yes a set of requests for footage could swap them (although I think the footage needs to show the people – not just the car). On the other hand if it just the plates, then no problem.

        2. Rob_G

          But anyone who is recorded by any CCTV camera is currently entitled to do this (though I suppose it must be that no-one does), so I am not certain how this new set of cameras would be in any way different… I guess the volume of traffic(?)

  2. eoin

    An organisation where 1/4 of them are suspected of gross negligence or worse in relation to juvenile convictions, which falsified 2 million bogus breath tests, orchestrated 15,000 unsound convictions, which can’t meet basic detection targets (see p 20 of the Garda annual report card published today http://www.policingauthority.ie/assets/uploads/documents/Full-year_Assessment_of_2018_Policing_Performance_1.pdf), which can’t produce reliable crime statistics, which, from the top, smeared an honest sergeant, engaged in gossip about a TD, and where two employees in the local division have recently been suspended pending a corruption investigation wants to blanket record your activity in public space.

    We need to knock this poo on its head at the outset, the benefit of detecting and prosecuting crime is more than offset by the potential to invade and improperly exploit citizens’ privacy.

      1. eoin

        I don’t know what cameras they’re using in Limerick, but the mass surveillance in China is frightening, it’s bad enough that your car’s numberplate can be linked to you, but when facial recognition is introduced, they can (and do) restrict your travel and interactions. That’s China, and people will say, it will never happen here, but look next door at our neighbours and their mass surveillance, and Brits would be outraged if you told them they’re practically at the police state stage.


        The Wapo article is a bit meh, bit surprised they gave a minor academic a platform to big up what was a minor initiative, Paddy Cosgrave’s website and Facebook ads.

  3. rotide

    I’m always really confused by the outrage generated by these types of things.

    This system records licence plates, which are by their very nature publicly viewable identifiers which noone has ever had a problem with. CCTV recording licence plates is basically a far more reliable version of asking witnesses after the fact ‘did you get the licence plate?’.

    It’s not like this system looks up the plate, compares the owner of said plate with it’s facebook data and forwards all of that to a central garda intelligence unit (yet). If that were the case, then maybe it would be time to examine it but its not.

    1. Cian

      I agree with most of this. Especially the pearl-clutching about cameras.

      My issue is (a) how long do they keep this data? and (b) who can access the information and how is it secured/audited?

      1. Brother Barnabas

        I think it would be for the best if you and rotide could desist from openly agreeing with one another. do it inwardly – read one another’s comments, nod knowingly and think, “yep.. this guy knows where it’s at”. But leave it at that. It’s all too inflammatory otherwise.

    2. Joxer

      “It’s not like this system looks up the plate, compares the owner of said plate with it’s facebook data and forwards all of that to a central garda intelligence unit (yet). If that were the case, then maybe it would be time to examine it but its not.”

      the time to examine has already passed…. although what you outline is probably not happening, what you outline is possible and not some product of a dystopian future. its all now.

  4. H

    Not sure what all the fuss is about here but then I live in London where everyone is captured on camera an average 200 times everyday. It really makes you think before scratching your ass or adjusting your underwear….

  5. Big Barney

    It’s the same as having a Leap Card in Dublin, but different.*
    They know where/who you are and can take a good guess at what you’re actually doing.
    Think about it. Think of the benefits.

    I cant think of any.

    I read the book called 1984 when1984 was still the future. Now it’s the past and the present.

    *only if you register it.

Comments are closed.