Security bureau to install camcorders in its vehicles

By Lo Tien-pin and Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter, with Staff writer

Tue, Oct 16, 2012 - Page 4

The National Security Bureau intends to spend about NT$1 million (US$30,000) on installing camcorders on the 200 vehicles under its authority, but access to, and the release of, potentially classified information will remain an issue.

Bureau officials said the move was in response to an increase in traffic accidents involving its vehicles and that the camcorders would help verify the cause of accidents involving its vehicles.

Military departments are to follow suit, but will do so in several phases, with priority given to active service vehicles and those used in supervising military operations.

According to an unnamed bureau source, installing digital camcorders will need to be strictly regulated because the devices can record both sounds and video images. As such, the conversations of bureau officials in vehicles will be classified. If an accident occurs, the data will be downloaded for viewing and analyzing to ascertain the cause of the mishap.

There have to be restrictions on access to and in release of possible classified information, the source said.

A bureau official said that the camcorders would not be installed on vehicles used for the security and transport of the president, adding that for the camcorders in vehicles, sound recording functions would be turned off.

When the devices are installed, they will fall under the bureau’s provisions on regulating information and media and control tag management.