Big Brother intensified for Olympics

By Laura Miller

The British public is set to come under even closer scrutiny during 2012 from an advanced CCTV system specially designed for the London Olympics.

The DYVINE system would allow police to tap-in to every CCTV network in London via a central police control room, and plot the information on a detailed 3D map.

“We are already the most watched society in the world and yet ministers want more snooping powers,” said Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman Chris Huhne of reports that development of an advanced monitoring system is already underway.

A fifth of the world’s cameras are now pointed at UK citizens, a situation Mr Huhne blames on the “unchecked” growth of CCTV in Britain.

“These plans should not be implemented without significant public debate and legislation outlining clear safeguards,” he added.

Human rights group Liberty echoed Mr Huhne’s call for a debate over the issue, and warned that under current law such a system would be illegal.

“Effectively somebody can be monitored 24-hours-a-day as they go about their business, so this is a fundamental shift in what CCTV can do” said spokesperson Isabella Sankey.

The draft security strategy for the games will be presented to ministers next month.

Responsibility for planning security at the Olympics will then be passed from the Home Office to the Office of Security and Counter Terrorism.