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A Legal Question if anyone knows about CCTV

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Finbar Donating Member (203 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:32 PM
Original message
A Legal Question if anyone knows about CCTV
Help legal eagle friends! My former place of employment ( a restaurant ) has decided to do something that I think is illegal. I know this because my former staff has called me to gripe to me. They are still loyal to me. They have put in a camera, one of those little half globe black glass ones, into the bar at the restaurant. They say it is because people are stealing. It supposedly is transmitted to Corporate security and stored there in case it is needed for review.
Herein lies my problem with this. There are no signs posted for employees or customers that say that the location is being monitored by CCTV. I also know this company, and they are way too cheap to spend money like this over a missing bottle of Abslout Peach. So, are they dummy cameras to scare the staff? Or are they real? If they are real.. does anybody know the legality of this? I researched a little bit tonight about the Data Protection Act of 1998, but it is mostly about the employees, not the customers. Any advice would help.
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:38 PM
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1. They told YOU, didn't they?
My guess is that they're real, the owners will watch a little while and then they'll be used for their stated purpose, in case the till is short or the liquor's being used up a lot faster than profits would indicate.

A lot of businesses have cameras. Few of them have signs posted. Anybody who doesn't assume he's being filmed at all times is naive.

Those things saved me the price of a video tape once. The manager and I reviewed the tape together at the time I supposedly checked out something I'd have to have taken leave of my senses to watch and it turned out to be a couple of thugs with a faked card. The same camera in the same store helped nail other thugs after robberies twice.

So they're not all bad. Just don't pick your nose in public. It could be saved for posterity.
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Finbar Donating Member (203 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:40 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. But there are no monitors on site to review the tapes.
And we are talking about a huge national chain here.
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KharmaTrain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:44 PM
Response to Original message
3. Reminds Me Of A Similar Situation...
Several years ago, I knew of some employees at a radio station who were vidoed bad mouthing one of the "stars"...the camera was hidden and so was the mike. They were fired and tried to sue for entrapment. The court ruled against these people saying that the conditions of the employ allowed the company to mount any camera or mike in their business...or monitor your phone calls or your web surfing. Since tbe discussion these people were having was considered "insubordination", it was used as grounds for firing and it held.
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Solon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:48 PM
Response to Original message
4. I think it depends on state, however, generally a sign is posted at the enterance...
Something like "This premises is monitored by Closed Circuit Cameras". In any event, it is legal for businesses to monitor their own premises with the exceptions of bathrooms or any areas where the people undress, such as public showers in gyms, dressing rooms in malls and stores, etc. Some states have stricter laws when it comes to audio recordings, in other words, visual is OK in some instances, audio is not. Also some have varying laws in regards to informing customers or employees. You said it was a globe, I imagine that the camera is more of a deterrence rather than actual surveillance, otherwise it would be less obvious.
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