How to use modern technologies to improve policing services is one of the most pressing concerns facing law enforcement today. Whether it’s using social media to engage the public, employing new surveillance technologies to identify suspects, or analyzing data to forecast future crime, police departments all around the world are adopting new technology at an unprecedented rate.
Body-worn cameras, which are being adopted by an increasing number of law enforcement organizations, are one new type of technology that is having a considerable impact on the subject of police. Body-worn cameras are being used by law enforcement for a variety of purposes, including improving strengthening officer performance, evidence collection and accountability, documenting police-public encounters, increasing agency transparency and officer-involved incidents, and investigating and resolving complaints.
Although body-worn cameras have numerous advantages, they also raise serious concerns about how technology is altering police-community relations.
Body-worn cameras raise issues about the public’s privacy rights, but they also have the potential to influence how officers interact with members of the public, the public’s opinion of the police, and expectations about how police agencies should share information with the public. Before committing significant time and resources to the deployment of body-worn cameras, agencies must evaluate these and other critical issues.
The advancement of technology utilized by law enforcement organizations has accelerated at a breakneck speed over the last decade.
Many police chiefs are weighing whether or not to invest in technologies that did not exist when they started their careers, such as automated license plate readers, gunshot detection systems, facial recognition software, predictive analytics systems, communications systems that deliver data to officers’ laptops or handheld devices, GPS applications, and social media to investigate crimes and communicate with the public.
For many police chiefs, the largest hurdle is determining the correct combination of technologies for a certain jurisdiction based on its crime problems, funding levels, and other criteria, rather than deciding whether to implement one particular technology. Finding the optimal combination of technology, on the other hand, is a must.
Advantages of Police wearing body cams
Body-worn cameras provide several advantages, according to police leaders who have used them. Body-worn cameras, they say, are valuable for documenting evidence, officer training, preventing and resolving citizen complaints, and improving police transparency, performance, and accountability.
Furthermore, because police officers today live in a world where anybody with a smartphone with a functioning camera can record video footage of a police contact, body-worn cameras assist police departments in ensuring that events are caught from an officer’s perspective.
The use of body-worn cameras presents serious privacy and trust concerns. What are the privacy concerns that come with recording crime victims? How can cops establish strong connections with the public if they are required to record practically every interaction with the public? Will it be off-putting for members of the public to be told by an officer, “I am recording this contact,” especially if it is a minor one? Do officers’ body cams jeopardize their relationships with their bosses in the police department?
Body-worn cameras by Comvision have helped police departments increase accountability and openness in a variety of ways. Body-worn cameras, according to these authorities, have made police operations more visible to the public by giving a video record of officer action and have helped address questions following contact between officers and members of the public.
Body-worn cameras, according to these officials, are aiding in the prevention of problems by raising officer professionalism, assisting agencies in evaluating and improving officer performance, and allowing agencies to detect and fix deeper structural flaws within the department. As a result, they claim that their agencies are receiving fewer complaints and that officer-public exchanges have improved.