Dallmeier Electronic has introduced a remote controlled Privacy Shield for its Panomera cameras. With a few mouse clicks, government authorities, police forces as well as private businesses can cover the lenses of the cameras with a kind of “privacy curtain” in order to protect the privacy rights of individuals concerned, e.g. during peaceful public assemblies, company staff meetings or strikes.
One important prerequisite for the acceptance of video surveillance in public and business environments is that the privacy of data subjects must be respected. In early 2020 for example, several German courts ruled the following: During peaceful gatherings, not only must permanently installed video systems be switched off, but this must also be “sufficiently reliably evident” to all participants in the public assembly. Moreover, a growing number of companies must also protect the right to privacy of their employees, not least in response to the requirements of the EU GDPR or other national data protection laws. Until now, deactivating surveillance cameras visibly has caused a substantial logistical effort: The police or security personnel must disguise each camera individually, at great expense with the aid of elevating platforms. Returning the installations to their original condition is equally time-consuming. Given the several hundred assemblies per year held in larger cities, shift changes or strikes in businesses, this rapidly leads to substantial costs for additional manpower and the requisite equipment such as elevating platforms. Furthermore, the police and security personnel are unable to activate the cameras again at short notice if indications of possible dangers become evident.
Video security manufacturer Dallmeier has developed a system called Privacy Shield to tackle these issues: Users can remotely control a kind of “blind” – that is made of a special non-transparent material – directly via the GUI in the control centre, and within a few seconds cover the lenses of the Dallmeier Panomera systems.
The Privacy Shield has a highly visible colour and bears the printed image of a crossed-out camera, showing clearly for any person: there is no video observation or video surveillance. This solution could also be used in business environments if area or car park surveillance is to be deactivated at certain times, for example, such as during shift changes, company meetings or strikes. The system is not only available in the latest Panomera generation; existing systems can also be upgraded easily. Full information on this subject is available from the manufacturer.
“As a German manufacturer, we have mastered the topic of data protection and data security through years of cooperation with authorities. This is why it was important to us to make a system available for government authorities, and private businesses as well, which addresses these many requirements in a single solution,” said Dieter Dallmeier, founder and CEO at Dallmeier electronic. “This includes the need for comprehensive protection of the privacy of citizens, or employees, to be able to comply with the legal provisions and to be able to comply with the requirement to deactivate and activate surveillance at reasonable expense. With our Dallmeier Privacy Shield, we demonstrate once again that innovation “Made in Germany” is not just an empty phrase, but offers clearly identifiable added value for all parties involved. The fact that the system can also be retrofitted, underscores our efforts to ensure sustainability.”