Sample IT Paper on Public Surveillance Systems

Public Surveillance Systems

Public surveillance systems are an example of emerging technology in the field of public monitoring. The technology has evolved over the past few decades and has seen heavy commercialization that makes it an essential part of daily life in numerous developing nations. The reason why public surveillance systems are considered emergent is not only because they have arisen over the past few decades but due to their importance in crime reduction, especially in metropolitan areas. These systems also have a huge implication for personal and public privacy that necessitates a trade-off between enhancing security and violating the privacy of the general public.

Literature Review

Cavoukian, A. (2012). Guidelines for the Use of Video Surveillance Cameras in Public Places. Toronto: Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario

Greenwald, G. (2014). No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S Surveillance State. New York: Henry Holt and Company

McFarland, M. (2012, June 1). Why We Care about Privacy. Retrieved from Santa Clara University:

Park, H., Oh, G. S., & Yeop, S. (2013). “Measuring the Crime Displacement and Diffusion of Benefit Effects of Open-street CCTV in South Korea. International Journal of Law, Crime and Justice , 179-191.

Schneier, B. (2016). Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World. New York: W.W Norton

The sources delineated above are peer-reviewed sources of information, meaning that they are reliable and credible. The sources are also well-researched and utilize both primary and secondary evidence to inform their discussion. Additionally, they correctly utilize secondary info from other sources which are well-cited in the journals as well as secondary tools of data collection. Besides being credible and reliable, however, they are related to the topic at hand and give differing accounts for comparison on the reliability, necessity, and conflict between public surveillance systems and privacy.

Research Methods

Using secondary tools of data collection can be quite challenging with its benefits and drawbacks. The benefits of secondary tools include efficiency in time utilization, as the data is already collected, processed, and analyzed, and only requires personal interpretation. It also saves on resource use as little is required for the data which can easily be downloaded. Things like transportation and pother recurrent expenditure are eliminated. Additionally, secondary data increases the volume of data available to the researcher. With a large volume of data to choose from, a researcher can get all the data that they want for comparison.

The method, however, has its drawbacks. Secondary data is tuned to specific research conditions; hence, the data collected may be inappropriate for current study especially if research conditions differ. The data may also be outdated, making it redundant. As one is making recommendations based on the assumptions of others, the risk of bias and inaccuracy is increased. Some challenges of secondary data relate to accuracy, reliability, and appropriateness to present study conditions. Finding appropriate data is a challenge, as data may be manipulated or inaccurate, leading to wrong conclusions and recommendations. Given the freedom to choose between secondary and primary sources, I would have a trade-off between the two I order to increase the chances of accuracy and reliability.

Final Reflection

The research itself was enjoyable, although numerous challenges were encountered. Firstly, finding reliable sources of data was difficult, and where the sources were available, deciding on the correctness of the information was hard and done arbitrarily. A lot of time was also required to go through the large pool of data and sort it into clusters depending on use. It was also hard to avoid the biases of the previous researchers, or come to a ready conclusion as some of the evidence was differing.

The research was an eye-opener, particularly as regards the pervasiveness of public monitoring systems. It allowed me to witness how technology changes rapidly, and how humans have come to depend so much on it. While technology is essential to our lives, however, the costs of misuse or neglect are numerous. Public surveillance systems, for example, can be utilized in perpetrating crime by unscrupulous people. Moreover, they can be utilized to monitor people unconstitutionally which are an infringement on the rights of citizens. Technological advancements, therefore, have to be accompanied by legal and structural changes to assure the smooth working of such technology.

As earlier stipulated, the research exercise was a challenge. The research exercise was successful, and results were drawn, but the research was not exhaustive. Numerous challenges were encountered, and a lot of time was taken sieving through the data. These challenges highlighted the need for preparedness. In future researches, therefore, preparedness will be pivotal. This preparedness will include doing a prior reading and writing an exhaustive outline before beginning the research. That said, further research needs to be conducted on how much the public feels that its rights have been infringed upon with regards to public surveillance.