The other side of "big brother": CCTV surveillance and intelligence gathering by private police.

David Aspland

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter


There has been a significant shift in the nature of policing over the past 30 to 40 years across most policing jurisdictions and contexts. The paradigm of policing being a purely, or even substantially, government function is under challenge. Policing is becoming more â''pluralisedâ'� with a range of actors, both public and private taking up changed roles in the new policing paradigm. This shift has significant social implications for the general public, together with the public and private organisations that provide policing services. These implications are discussed and highlighted through the increasing use of information technology by private police in two key areas, that of CCTV surveillance and intelligence gathering. This paper initially discusses this shift between the public and private sectors in policing and why private policing has enjoyed a resurgence after public policing agencies dominated the field of policing since the early 19th century. The situation in modern policing is more complex than a simple public/private divide and plays host to a range of interactions that bring many policing actors into contact, competition and alliance in networks and assemblages. Yet most research and regulation remains focused on public policing even though, numerically, private policing is now a major provider of policing services in an increasingly fragmented, pluralized and commodified market. The paper considers the regulation of private policing mainly as it exists in the Australian context and how in applies to the use of information technology, together with issues for Human Rights, especially privacy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCases on public information management and e-government adoption
EditorsC.G. Reddick
Place of PublicationUnited States
PublisherInformation Science Reference
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)9781466609822
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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