Captivating Surveillance Camera Statistics

Surveillance Camera Statistics 2024: Do Cameras Deter Crime?

Published on: January 7, 2024
Last Updated: January 7, 2024

Surveillance Camera Statistics 2024: Do Cameras Deter Crime?

Published on: January 7, 2024
Last Updated: January 7, 2024

In America, there is a constant debate going on about whether surveillance cameras belong in public venues and areas like stores, parks, bars, night clubs, schools, libraries, airports, etc. 

The whole debate makes some people feel safer with cameras around, but for others, it’s a huge invasion of privacy.

The truth is, they are all correct. It can make you feel safer and more secure, but it does invade your privacy.

We will look at the figures and statistics about this matter and weigh the pros and cons ourselves. 

That can help people think about it and see what their feelings are when it comes to having surveillance cameras in public places.

Did you know that there are cities in China with some of the heaviest video surveillance in the world? This data is based on the number of cameras per 1,000 people.

We are going to look at surveillance camera statistics across the globe to see where other countries and regions stand, and find out more about government reports, law enforcement websites, some news reports, and other information to gather some facts and figures for you to consider. 

Resource Contents show

Key Statistics

  • 58% of people think having surveillance cameras in public places isn’t invasive.
  • Areas in Baltimore Maryland, and Chicago Illinois, showed a reduction in crimes. 
  • According to the ACLU, CCTV is vulnerable to abuse. 
  • According to Privacy SOS, no scientific study has been conducted on the efficacy of New York City surveillance schemes.
  • China has the record for the heaviest public surveillance in the world. 
  • India has two cities that made the list of highly surveillance places. 
  • Russia is number 26 for most surveillance cities.
  • Los Angeles, California in the United States ranks 46th among the most surveilled cities in the world. 
  • Bangkok, Thailand ranks 48th among the most surveilled places on the globe.
  • ADT shows a 50% reduction or more in crime in neighborhoods.

Detailed Surveillance Camera Statistics in 2024

We’re going to use this section as a measure of public perception of camera surveillance, and see how that looks to the average person. 

1. 58% of People Claim They Don’t Think Having Surveillance Cameras in Public Places Is Invasive.

According to a survey from, which is no longer available online, 58% of people surveyed said that public surveillance isn’t an invasion of privacy, while 42% said that it is. 

Again, they are all correct in their own rights. If you measure this according to pros and cons, this is how that looks.

  • Yes, it can improve public safety.
  • Yes, it can reduce crime rates.
  • Yes, it can help catch criminals.
  • Yes, it helps with clues and evidence finding.
  • Yes, it can be convenient in everyday life.
  • Surveillance cameras are easily abused.
  • It’s expensive to put up public surveillance cameras.
  • The efficacy of public surveillance cameras is in question. 

What do the numbers say about the pros and cons? Let’s take a look.

2. Areas in Baltimore Maryland, and Chicago Illinois, Showed a Reduction in Crimes. 

About four months after surveillance cameras were installed in downtown Baltimore, Maryland, crime incidents dropped by more than 30 instances per month.

The figures remained steady between March 2007 and March 2008. 

In 2003, after cameras were installed in Humboldt Park in Chicago, Illinois, there was a short spike in crime with almost 500 crimes reported each month.

The following month showed a reduction of 20% and maintained that level for some time.

While these are only two instances of high crime areas, it does show some reduction in criminal activity.

What about as criminals get smarter and use more technology? The debate continues since it’s about security over privacy. 

Do you feel more secure where there are surveillance cameras, or do you see that as an invasion of privacy. It also depends on where you live and the crime rates, right?

3. Video Surveillance Like Ring Doorbells Shows Promise in Helping Law Enforcement Solve More Crimes.

So, according to the Enid Police Department, video surveillance like the Ring doorbell and other systems and public surveillance has helped them catch more criminals red-handed. 

After all, it’s hard to say you didn’t do something that a camera clearly shows you doing when they are used properly in crime scene investigations.

More and more law enforcement officials seek out where cameras in public places are to see if they can find evidence of whodunit. 

4. According to The ACLU, CCTV is Vulnerable to Abuse. 


Some of the claims from the ACLU say that high-ranking law enforcement officers have used public video surveillance to blackmail people.

It happened in 1997 when a top officer used footage to gather data on customers at a gay bar. 

Other forms of abuse that have been shown include intentional abuse to spy on people, personal abuse to stalk people, discriminatory targeting, and voyeurism.

None of these abuses is okay.

There are several surveillance statistics that show abuse has happened and still happens.

The ACLU also claims that there is not enough proof that CCTV or any public video surveillance helps solve crimes or is effective for law enforcement.

They believe that it’s too easy to abuse it over using it properly. 

5. According to Privacy SOS, No Scientific Study Has Been Conducted on The Efficacy of New York City Surveillance Schemes. 

This mostly comes from the side of racial profiling, which is wrong, but certain entities and higher ups think that public video surveillance is just another way to treat the country’s citizens however they please,  without regard or respect. 

Much of what the ACLU does and says is about invading the privacy of others and their rights.

One of the things they use for their debate is that people have the constitutional right to be free of unreasonable searches.

Now that cameras can now read more biometric data, an unreasonable search can become a reasonable search. The debate continues in America.

Also, the debate about the expense of putting up public surveillance cameras is a thing. It is apt to raise taxes and inflation in cities where they are needed. 

Surveillance Camera Statistics by Region 2024

Now that you have a few basic debate statistics, let’s move on to countries where public surveillance is used and see what those numbers uncover. 

6. China Has the Record for The Heaviest Public Surveillance in The World. 

So, China is the country where people are publicly surveilled the most. That data is from 2020.

The study showed that in 50 heavily populated cities across the globe, 18 out of 20 cities are in China.

According to U.S News, China hosts 54% of all public video cameras used around the world.

Taiyuan is the biggest city in China’s Shanxi province and has 465,255 surveillance cameras that watch almost 3.9 million people in that city.

This data represents one camera for every eight people in the city. 

7. London Has One Camera per Every 14 Residents.

London cctv

Besides China, London made the top 10 list of the most surveilled cities.

London has 627,727 cameras for its 9.3 million residents, which means they have one public surveillance camera per 14 residents.

Rebecca Moody, Comparitech researcher, says that having more cameras just barely correlates with having a lower instance of crime.

Generally speaking, she says that having more cameras doesn’t mean less crime.  

8. India Has Two Cities that Made the List of Highly Surveilled Places. 

India ranks 16th and 21st with its cities of Hyderabad and Chennai.

There are about 300,000 public CCTV cameras in Hyderabad alone.

So, that means there are 30 cameras per 1,000 residents in that city. Hyderabad is home to 10,004,144 residents. 

In Chennai, there are 26 CCTV cameras that record the activities of 1,000 residents. Chennai has 10,971,108 residents and 280,000 cameras.

Note that Chennai has more residents, but its number of cameras is lower. 

New Delhi didn’t make the top 30 list because they have only 14 CCTV video cameras per 1,000 people. 

9. Baghdad in Iraq’s Public CCTV Usage Is Relatively Low Compared to Its Population. 

You have now seen the density of cameras in large cities, but in Baghdad, the number of cameras is relatively low compared to the population of the city.

Baghdad has about 7,144,260 (from what we know), but they rank 25th for one of the most surveilled regions in the world.

They have only 120,000 cameras monitoring Baghdad’s residents. So, they have 17 per 1,000 residents. 

It was reported in 2021 that there is the potential for new surveillance cameras to be installed across the city.

So, there is likely more surveillance now than at the time of this writing. 

10. Russia Is Number 26 for Most Surveilled Cities.

Moscow, in Russia holds the 26th ranking of the most surveilled cities in the world.

Moscow has about 193,000 CCTV cameras throughout the city.

The most recent census data shows that there are 7, 144,260 people living in this Russian city, so that accounts for about 15 surveillance cameras per 1,000 people.

Russia’s city of Saint Petersburg didn’t make the top 30, but instead ranked 34th.

Saint Petersburg, Russia is home to about 5,467,808 residents and has 55,064 cameras. That means there are about 10 cameras per 1,000 people there.

11. Singapore Has a Very Low Crime Rate, and Is Considered Among the Globe’s Safest Countries. 

Even with low crime rates, Singapore still has 86,000 surveillance cameras monitoring its 5,935,053 residents to keep them safe.

Therefore, there are only 14 cameras per 1,000 residents in Singapore, as per

It’s now estimated that there are 90,000 cameras in Singapore, bringing it to 17 cameras per resident.

The powers that be said, they solved an additional 5,000 crimes in December 2020 because of the additional cameras. 

12. Australia Ranked 33rd in The List of Most CCTV Video-Monitored Cities.

Sydney, Australia’s capital city, has 4,925,987 people living in it, and about 60,000 CCTV cameras that monitor the city.

That comes to around 12 cameras per every 1,000 residents of Sydney.

In March 2021, we know there was a breach of their surveillance cameras, but we have no current updates or any more about what happened since the breach.

13. Istanbul, Turkey Ranks 39th Among the Densest Cities with Heavy Video Surveillance in The World. 

The recorded number of people living in Istanbul is 15,190,336. Istanbul has 109,000 video surveillance cameras all around the city monitoring its residents.

Therefore, there are 20 cameras per 1,000 people in Istanbul. 

With unrest in this country, it’s no wonder they heavily use video surveillance to protect their people and to identify attackers.

These CCTV videos have helped to document gun attacks in 2016 and 2017 where the attackers were identified. 

14. Los Angeles, California in The United States Ranks 46th Among the Most Surveilled Cities in The World. 

If it surprises you that the US has only one city that ranks in the top 50 most surveilled cities in the world, you are not alone.

We would have thought there were many more cameras and surveillance in U.S. cities.

Los Angeles is home to 4,016, 940 people with 22,678 cameras around the city. That means they have only 6 cameras per every 1,000 Los Angeles residents. 

New York, New York isn’t even in the top 50, which is shocking to know. New York City ranks 56th with 8,323,340 residents and 31,490 cameras.

We are surprised that New York City is more heavily surveilled. Are you surprised?

15. Bangkok, Thailand Ranks 48th Among the Most Surveilled Places on The Globe.

Bangkok barely made the top 50 of the cities that are most surveilled in the world.

This city is home to 10,539,415 people and has 57,770 CCTV cameras installed for protecting its residents.

Taking this figure into consideration, that means there are roughly 5 cameras per every 1,000 Bangkok residents. 

More cameras have been and are being considered for installation over the next year in Bangkok. This started in 2020 and will likely continue into 2022.

In January 2021, local law enforcement officials installed additional CCTV cameras to help protect residents and tourists more effectively.

Since this decision was made, tourism has picked up in Thailand. 

The Efficacy of Surveillance Cameras

This section will complete this article. We will be looking at this in facts, figures, and statistics as we usually do.

16. ADT Shows a 50% Reduction or More in Crime in Neighborhoods.

adt logo

This is more about how effective a home security system is over a public city system of CCTV cameras.

However, it does show that cameras can help deter, prevent, and help law enforcement investigate crimes. 

With advancements in technology, clearer video is possible, which helps law enforcement uncover evidence they couldn’t before cameras.

What has been proven is that most criminals don’t want to be seen on camera, so it makes sense that they might be less apt to rob or attack people in front of installed cameras. 

ADT says that security cameras do generally deter and reduce burglaries.

They also used a study by Orange County, New Jersey, where all crime was reduced by 50% in the city due to the installation of surveillance cameras. 

Also, a comprehensive study from the University of North Carolina showed that 60% of burglars in prison said they would look for an alarm or camera before breaking into a house.

If the house has a security system, they are most likely to move to a new target. 

17. According to Data Gathered by The British Transport Police, There Is a Positive Correlation Between Crime-Solving and CCTV Cameras. 

British Transport Police

So besides having some positive feedback about using CCTV in America, we also found something from the British Transport Police that shows a positive correlation between the existence of CCTV cameras in an area and solving crimes. 

This data was gathered between 2011 and 2015 by British Police and used in court to identify suspects.

They also showed that these cameras have been reducing crime rates in targeted areas.

It’s showing that criminals aren’t as likely to commit petty crimes where cameras can identify them.


What is CCTV?

CCTV stands for closed-circuit television, which is often used for public protection and crime prevention all over the globe.

The broadcasts of CCTV video are closed, or limited to only a few monitors, not broadcast to the world.

You can’t just watch TV and suddenly get a CCTV broadcast.

That would be very unusual.

CCTV is mostly used to detect and deter criminal activities, but is also used to record traffic violations.

There are other uses for CCTV, but these are the two that are most important.

In 1942, German scientists developed the first CCTV technology.

Why Is CCTV Footage so Grainy and Unclear Still?

This is a great question that we looked into to answer for you. CCTV technology is low-quality and grainy due to compression and file resolution.

Also, the way it’s recorded. You would think that CCTV technology would evolve and get better with all the camera technology on the loose.

After all, our mobile phones have better camera technology, right?

Well, the reason we uncovered this is due to the reason for the use of the camera.

When you are recording or taking pictures with your smartphone, you have the advantage of being able to take pictures and shoot in lower light.

Security cameras record using IR, infrared technology where dark areas can appear more illuminated and still generate a good image that can be enhanced by experts.

So, due to the nature of CCTV, it’s different from smartphone camera technology, and therefore does what it’s supposed to do.

Maybe someday, it can be improved and still do its job.

What Are Other Uses for CCTV?

We mentioned that there are other uses for CCTV, so we will get to that answer now.

Crime management is only one aspect of CCTV.

It’s also used for disaster management where rescue workers can monitor and assess situations from inside burning buildings, a dark cave or mine, or from a helicopter flying above a scene.

CCTV also monitors and protects cities and communities.

Traffic light cameras help identify speeders.

Real-time weather data is used by law enforcement to protect local communities from disasters like tornadoes.

In this case, CCTV cameras are like guard dogs.

Medical monitoring and diagnostics are another use for CCTV.

Smart software used in CCTV cameras can identify pain, anxiety, and other thoughts and feelings based on facial expressions.

Also, patients can be monitored using CCTV to identify potential issues like a stroke, asthma attack, or seizure.

Behavioral research is another area where CCTV comes in very handy.

For instance, CCTV is used to research suicide.

This research has uncovered that CCTV can recognize when a person is about to throw themselves in front of a train, or jump off a building.

It’s also used in some schools to monitor bullying and playground issues.

Retail intelligence is gathered through CCTV surveillance.

Market data, buying trends, and essentially watching people helps retailers better provide what is needed in their stores.

What do people shop for? When are the peak times in a store? What are the highest buying peaks?

This is marketing data that retailers need to enhance customer experiences.

What Are Some Types of CCTV Systems?

Analog, digital, and Network or IP systems are used in CCTV.


We have gathered and shared all the surveillance camera statistics we could find that are recent and known.

All CCTV types and versions have their pros and cons, but overall, this technology seems to have a positive effect on the public and on public safety.

That said, it can also be very invasive and it can be abused by those in power, which is unfair and unwarranted.

When used for the proper purposes and under the right circumstances, CCTV statistics show that crime can be reduced, law enforcement can better solve crimes, and that this technology deters most criminals. 

What do you think about CCTV? What are your thoughts about its abuse and the issue of possible invasion of privacy?


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Written by Jason Wise

Hello! I’m the editor at EarthWeb, with a particular interest in business and technology topics, including social media, privacy, and cryptocurrency. As an experienced editor and researcher, I have a passion for exploring the latest trends and innovations in these fields and sharing my insights with our readers. I also enjoy testing and reviewing products, and you’ll often find my reviews and recommendations on EarthWeb. With a focus on providing informative and engaging content, I am committed to ensuring that EarthWeb remains a leading source of news and analysis in the tech industry.