SIOUX LOOKOUT — The Ontario Provincial Police in Sioux Lookout is implementing a CCTV and security video registry called CAMSafe.
The registry is a web-based database of camera locations that acts as a resource to help police investigate crimes in the area.
For example, for a specific location under investigation, a police officer can access the CAMSafe website to see who in the area has a registry surveillance device. Officers will then approach the owner and ask permission to see their footage.
“When a police officer uses the CAMSafe database, they will see a map of the local area. Officers can click on registered addresses to view further details, such as property owner contact information,” said Staff Sgt. Michael Kreisz, the OPP's Sioux Lookout detachment manager.
Kreisz said authorized officers have access to the database and upon request to the property owner only then can police receive any camera footage.
The registrants can provide basic contact information and camera location only. But if they decide to include more on their profile like the direction the camera faces, footage retention details or screenshots of the camera view CAMSafe has those options available.
“Members of the public are only required to enter basic contact information and the location of their camera(s), but they are able to include more details if they desire. Public users can only view the information related to their account, and can delete or change their account details at any time,” said Kreisz.
When asked how CAMSafe will aid OPP in solving crimes in the community, Kreisz explained that the program will be a crucial part of their investigations as video evidence becomes more prevalent in today’s social climate.
“This program will undoubtedly be a very valuable tool for the OPP. Video evidence is a crucial part of many police investigations and can take days to locate," Kreisz said.
"With CAMSafe, an investigating officer can geofence an area to see if there are any registered cameras within it and reach out to the property owners from there. CAMSafe will be an effective tool to quickly locate the footage required for investigations and arrests, ultimately leading to a safer community."