Introduction

The ACT Government, in collaboration with ACT Policing, works around the clock to keep Canberrans safe. The evolution and improvement of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) has resulted in this technology being adopted by the ACT Government as a key means to enhance public safety, protect public assets and support the work of ACT Policing to investigate and respond to crime and bring offenders to justice.

In 2001, the ACT Government established the Public Safety CCTV Network (CCTV Network). This Network has evolved to become a sophisticated inter-connection of CCTV systems in public open spaces and venues across the ACT. The CCTV Network is a powerful tool that is used by the ACT Government and ACT Policing to enhance public safety and fight crime.

 

What is the Public Safety CCTV Network?

The Public Safety CCTV Network (CCTV Network) is an inter-connection of CCTV systems located at public spaces, venues and events. These include:

  • Canberra City
  • Haig Park
  • Henry Rolland Park (Acton)
  • GIO Stadium
  • Exhibition Park in Canberra (EPIC)
  • Manuka Oval
  • Manuka Shopping Precinct
  • Kingston Shopping Precinct
  • Greenway Central Business District.

The CCTV Network is comprised of approximate 90 CCTV cameras. These cameras are a mix of fixed/static cameras and moveable pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras.

Live and recorded footage from the CCTV Network is made available to specific users within the ACT Government and ACT Policing for the purpose of supporting public safety through asset security, business monitoring, event management, incident management and the investigation of crime

How does the CCTV Network help to create safer public spaces, venues and events?

The cameras of the CCTV Network are high quality and have been specifically installed at locations where people gather, move or visit. These cameras coupled with signage help to deter anti-social behaviour or the risk of a crime occurring.

The CCTV network records the footage from the cameras on a 24x7 basis. On Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, staff of ACT Policing actively monitor the CCTV Network. These monitoring staff are specially trained to operate the CCTV network and look-out for suspicious behaviour and crime. In the 2018-19, ACT Policing dispatched resources on 79 occasions to situations or events observed on the CCTV Network that warranted police attendance. This early attendance of ACT Policing helped on numerous occasions to prevent crime, lessen the impact of unfolding crimes and apprehend criminals.

If a crime has occurred within the footprint of the CCTV Network, ACT Policing has the ability to view recorded footage to help investigate the crime. Where footage is available, it can be used to help identify offenders and support court proceedings. During 2018-19, ACT Policing copied footage from the CCTV Network on 277 occasions.

The ACT Government also uses the CCTV network to support event management, service delivery/operations and incident management.

How does the government determine the priorities for CCTV deployment across the ACT?

The government works in close consultation with ACT Policing to determine the priorities for CCTV deployment across the ACT. In the hierarchy of controls to solving a public safety or asset security issue, other options should be considered prior to CCTV. However, the technical capabilities of CCTV at increasingly competitive costs has made it a very attractive option.

The ACT Government had adopted Guidelines for the Deployment of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) in the ACT (the Guidelines) to help inform how CCTV is deployed across the ACT. These Guidelines take into account crime trends, CCTV effectiveness, public safety benefit, feasibility and cost.

Who manages the CCTV Network?

The Security and Emergency Management Branch (SEMB) manages and develops the CCTV Network. SEMB is part of the Community Safety Division within the ACT Government Justice and Community Safety Directorate.

Who has access to the CCTV Network?

Access to the CCTV Network is strictly controlled and limited to those that have a need to access live and recorded footage in support of their business need or operation.

Which Minister has portfolio responsibility for the CCTV Network?

The Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Mr Mick Gentleman MLA has portfolio responsibility for the CCTV Network.

How is my privacy assured if I enter an area where the CCTV Network is operating?

Access to and the use of the CCTV Network is strictly controlled.

All CCTV systems operated by the ACT Government comply with ACT human rights, privacy and record keeping legislation. These include:

  • Human Rights Act 2004
  • Information Privacy Act 2014
  • Workplace Privacy Act 2011
  • Territory Records Act 2002.

These Acts, in conjunction with the Code of Practice for Closed Circuit Television, provide for the following protections:

  • Signage displayed at locations where ACT Government CCTV systems are operating.
  • Access to the live and recorded CCTV systems is strictly controlled. Only approved users can access CCTV systems which are kept secure.
  • Footage from CCTV systems is retained for 30 days then deleted unless required for a specific purpose.
Solar Powered CCTV Network

Supporting the CCTV Network are solar powered CCTV cameras. These cameras were first trialled by the government in 2017 as a means to provide CCTV camera where access to power or ICT connectivity is not available.


Solar powered CCTV units require no fixed infrastructure to operate and transmit data securely over the mobile phone network. They provide the government with a cost effective and agile means of providing CCTV at a location for specific public safety or crime deterrence purposes.


The government currently has over 17 of these units operating across the ACT to support public safety, crime deterrence, business monitoring and asset security purposes. The locations include:

  • The National Arboretum Canberra
  • The Owl Artwork in Belconnen
  • Canberra City
  • Jerrabomberra Wetlands carpark (Fyshwick)
  • Lanyon Homestead
  • Mount Taylor
  • Four roads leading to the rural areas of Canberra (Uriarra Road, Cotter Road, Point Hut Road and Tharwa Drive).
I am the victim of a crime that may have been captured by the CCTV Network. What should I do?

Report the crime as soon as possible by calling 131 444 or visiting your local police station. You should mention that that crime may have been captured by the Public Safety CCTV Network.

Please note that footage from the CCTV system is automatically deleted after 30 days. Due to the variability in camera type, positioning and operation there is no guarantee that footage will be available or suitable for the investigation of crime.

Do not delaying reporting crimes that may have been captured by the CCTV Network to ACT Policing.

Can I get a copy of CCTV footage?

For privacy reasons the ACT Government does not release CCTV footage to the public. However, CCTV footage may be released to support Court proceedings.

How is the ACT Government working to develop the CCTV Network and CCTV capabilities in the ACT?

In the ACT Budget 2018-19, the government invested $975,000 over four-years to upgrade the CCTV Network. This includes new cameras to enhance the quality and resolution of camera footage, connecting the CCTV system at bus stations to the public safety CCTV network and upgrading software to enhance the capability of ACT Policing to review footage.

On 23 January 2020, the Minister for Police and Emergency Services launched Strategic Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) Plan 2020-2022 to help inform and guide the ongoing development of the CCTV.

I wish to make a more specific enquiry about the CCTV Network

Please contact the CCTV Program Officer within the Security and Emergency Management Branch by calling 13 22 81. Alternatively, please fill out an on-line enquiry using the ACT Government Online Feedback System.