Nearly 100,000 CCTV cameras run by public agencies alone are spying on Brits round the clock, figures show.
The “astronomical amount of surveillance” being managed by councils, police and transport authority was blasted by campaigners.
A study by investment company Growthdeck showed that local authorities had 77,500 CCTV cameras in 2019, a 3 percent improvement from the year before.
The Metropolitan Police has 3,000, while in the capital, the Times reported, Transport for London uses 16,500.
This follows a survey that put the UK’s total number of CCTV cameras at 5.2 million.
Gary Robins, from Growthdeck, proposed that the footage could be handled using artificial intelligence.
It is said that the popularity of doorbell cameras and home CCTV systems that cost less than £ 200 would fuel the increase.
According to the CCTV installation firm that carried out the report, concern over lockdown and the growth in mail-order sales has also motivated their use.
“It will not come as a shock to most people that the number of CCTV cameras in the United Kingdom has hit a new high, driven primarily by residents installing home CCTV in the past year,” said James Ritchey of cctv.co.uk.
The popularity of cameras for doorbells is relentless.
Although the numbers “may send shivers down the spine of those concerned about state monitoring,” he insisted, most CCTV cameras “are just homeowners protecting their property.”
With 689,000 CCTV cameras, London residents are the most-watched, followed by people in Birmingham with 83,000 and Leeds with 58,000.
46,000 in Glasgow, 43,000 in Sheffield, 39,000 in Manchester, 38,000 in Edinburgh and 36,000 in Liverpool.
With 33,000 cameras, Bristol and 27,000 from Cardiff make up the majority of the top 10.