British Taxis Will Soon Record You And Your Conversations

london taxi

Photo: lukeroberts via Flickr

Taxi passengers in the UK are set to be recorded and filmed while taking a ride, prompting protests from some civil liberties groups, reports AP.Cabs in the city of Oxford will now be required to install recording equipment and cameras to document passenger conversations during a journey.

Oxford’s city council has justified the move by saying that the invasion of privacy is superseded by the benefit to public safety.

Recordings will be made from the moment the taxi’s engine is running until 30 minutes after the car is stationed. Audio and visual footage of journeys will be kept for 28 days in order to be reviewed by the police should there be an incident.

However, civil liberties groups have condemned this new development. UK group, Big Brother Watch published a statement on its website today criticising the fact that authorities did not provide crime figures to justify the installations.

It also noted that the installation of cameras and voice recorders in taxis contradicted guidelines set by the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office which states:

“CCTV must not be used to record conversations between members of the public as this is highly
intrusive and unlikely to be justified.

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