New research conducted by Big Brother Watch and released today has revealed that 54 CCTV Smart Cars operated in 31 local councils in Britain caught and fined at least 188,000 motorists, making over £8 million in just 12 months.
The CCTV Smart Car is a relatively new addition to Britain’s streets. If you live outside of London, Kent or the North West you may not have seen this latest extension of the surveillance state. But, given the size of the fines being raked in by the current fleet, the chances are that you will soon.
Drive-by Spies is the first piece of research into this recent innovation; detailing the number of councils that have bought and are using CCTV Smart cars, the cost of the various schemes in the past year and how many people have been caught, fined and the amount these councils have accrued in fines over the past twelve months.
Through Freedom of Information requests sent to the local councils in England known to have invested in CCTV Smart cars, Big Brother Watch has created the first annual audit of the mobile CCTV surveillance menacing drivers in several parts of the country. We will be submitting this report to the relevant Government departments and encourage our supporters to help us fight this invasion of our privacy.
Dylan Sharpe, Campaign Director of Big Brother Watch, said:
"The CCTV Smart car represents a very dangerous escalation in Britain's surveillance society. The vehicles are sent out to catch people and make money, with road safety only an afterthought. £8 million is an eye-watering amount to take in fines in just 25 councils. It is surely only a matter of time before more councils start using these cars. The Coalition Government must act now and prevent that from happening."
To see if your local council has a CCTV Smart car, and the amount it has made in fines – take a look at the full report by clicking here.