These little devices are a technological wonder. They are everywhere now. So much video is being streamed across the web it is amazing. You can have a web cam set up to watch your home while you are away. You can ensure your pets act right while you are at work. You can chat live with a person half way around the globe. The truth is that the technology is taking over everything and we can expect it to continue to grow over the next several years. The price of the equipment has gone down so far in recent years, which helps to drive this trend but more importantly the technology is continuing to improve allowing so much more to be done than in years gone bye. There are web cams everywhere. They see nearly everything. They are all over the city you live in a camera attached to the Internet. These can be used for security and they often are. Better yet they are also used for law enforcement as well. Many cameras in high crime areas are monitored for criminal activity. There is also the opportunity to have cameras in the area of a crime follow the suspect vehicle with out any chase. This allows for a much safer experience when trying to capture a wanted individual.
Many companies have web cams in their manufacturing plants to keep track of workers. Recently I was told by my sales rep about an incident involving web cams. I have an online wig store called Elegant Wigs and speak with my sales rep every day as wig orders have to be sent in for drop shipping from the manufacture to my customers. Apparently the owner of this particular wig manufacturer had installed several web cams in his company’s distribution plant. Because he traveled a lot during the year to various hair alternative trade shows to display his newest styles to both brick-and-motor and online stores, he wanted to keep abreast of what was going on in the plant. There had been some problems regarding theft. Both his foreman and security head were monitoring the cams, but the owner also wanted to check in to see how the operations were going without making phone calls or skyping. When the cams first were installed, some of the workers grumbled thinking the owner was just spying on them. Well he was. However, as time went by the benefits became evident. The thefts ceased and the workers began to periodically hold up signs saying hi. The owner would also give out a monthly bonus to the worker who was the most productive. I like the fact that the workers were able to turn what could have become a big brother situation into a more light hearted reaction.
The problem is that some people think that all of these cameras are invading their privacy. Who’s to say? These cameras are not in your own home or inside of your vehicle. They are in the public, which means you give up much of the expectation of privacy when you are doing something. If you were interested in privacy you should take much more care not to do illegal activities in the public view. To be clear when you are on a street or in a public business you can expect that other people would see anything you might do. Therefore, you cannot legally have any real expectation of privacy and what the web cams record is admissible to be used in prosecuting you for your actions. Does this mean that everything you do is being watched? No, far from it but it does mean that if a notable crime happens the authorities can use the recordings to find suspects or create timelines and wanted pictures.
In this day and age it is best to think twice before any illegal or illicit activity in public places because anyone with a mind to do so can easily track your actions. It is believed that moving into the future this technology may play a significant role in protecting the public. For now it is still being developed for practical use.