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Security cameras are a great way to monitor, as well as prevent, misconduct by both customers and employees.
But for business owners looking to save some money, it might be tempting to install fake security cameras in their business, saving themselves the cost of expensive video equipment while still enjoying the preventative benefits of security cameras. After all, if people think they're being watched, they'll behave better, right?
The answer, as you may have guessed, is not necessarily. Furthermore, dummy cameras can potentially expose you to legal liability.
Fake cameras won't just trick would-be crooks. They may also trick your staff and customers into a false sense of security.
If a customer or staff member is attacked in a parking lot "secured" by a dummy camera, they may be able to argue in court that they relied on this false sense of security offered by the purported video surveillance in letting their guard down. This may lead to liability on the part of the business or property owner.
Generally, bathrooms are off limits for security cameras, whether inside a business or a public building. So what about installing a dummy camera in a bathroom to deter vandalism?
That was the rationale of a Florida middle school principal, who installed dummy security cameras in the bathrooms at her school to scare off graffiti artists. However, parents were outraged when they learned of the cameras, fake or not, and the America Civil Liberties Union considered filing suit against the school, reports the Palm Beach Post.
When it comes to fake cameras, the quick-install and cheap price may be tempting. But using dummy cameras in prohibited areas or in lieu of working video surveillance might end up making you the real dummy.
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.