NEARLY all CCTV systems in Britain are operating illegally, according to Bernie Brooks of consultancy firm Datpro, who also told Out Law Radio that less than 5 per cent of the buildings he surveyed met basic data protection laws.“If a system is non-compliant,” Brooks warned, “it could invalidate the usefulness of the evidence in a court of law.” Human rights activists in Britain have repeatedly called for the public to have easier access to recorded data. Brooks agreed, claiming basic rights were rarely considered by current laws.“You could, in theory, walk in [to a business] and say ‘I would like a copy of my images from yesterday’.“I tell you now, if you went and did that, 75 per cent of the businesses out there – if not 95 per cent – wouldn’t know what you were talking about and wouldn’t know how to handle it.” He said CCTV operators often told members of the public that only police were allowed to request footage but dismissed this as ‘rubbish’. “If somebody doesn’t know how to handle a request, it’s an offence under the [data protection] Act.” According to a report in Info4Security, under the Data Protection Act 1998 and the Freedom of Information Act 2000, public authorities are required to hand out any personal data they hold if it is requested by the person concerned.