UK police recommend installing CCTV cameras ‘at eye level’ for facial recognition

March 10, 2015 - 

People should install hidden CCTV cameras at “face level” outside their homes and businesses to improve the chances of successfully capturing criminals, recommends London’s Metropolitan Police Commissioner, according to a report by the Telegraph.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe suggests that people should install two cameras, including one mounted high on the wall to run surveillance of the complete criminal act and a second camera at face level that will capture criminals’ faces.

Those families and businesses that are only able to install one camera should do so at eye level, Hogan-Howe said.

Facial recognition technology allows police to compare images taken from CCTV cameras to a database of mugshots for the purpose of finding a successful match.

However, few households actually had cameras installed on the premises, and those that actually did would tend to position them far too high, he said.

“Taking [pictures of] the tops of their heads is not that helpful for facial recognition which relies on the eyes and the configuration of the area around the nose and the mouth,” Hogan-Howe said. “So we’re trying to get people ideally to add another camera at face level.”

Hogan-Howe said that the majority of criminals are “pretty disorganized” and are unlikely to consider breaking a camera if it is positioned at a lower height.

He recommended that more families and businesses should purchase cameras outside their homes and stores as they are “relatively cheap”.

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About Justin Lee

Justin Lee has been a contributor with Biometric Update since 2014. Previously, he was a staff writer for web hosting magazine and website, theWHIR. For more than a decade, Justin has written for various publications on issues relating to technology, arts and culture, and entertainment. Follow him on Twitter @BiometricJustin.