Research essays

free essaySurveillance or monitoring is constantly gaining popularity in many countries, particularly, in developed countries. Surveillance provides data for monitoring the behavior of a given population (Ragnedda, 2011). According to Akhlaque (2015), communication surveillance is the monitoring, interception, collection, preservation and retention of information the agent has communicated, transferred or composed of communications networks to the respondents. Actually, there are several categories of surveillance. Firstly, internet monitoring represent the capturing of data, as it travels across the Internet to the intended recipients (Akhlaque, 2015). Secondly, mobile control captures information that is transmitted across mobile networks, while fixed line interception captures data sent along public switched telephone networks through which international communication takes place (Akhlaque, 2015). Surveillance can also take place through intrusion, which involves planting malware that gives the operator full control over the device. In fact, surveillance should be greatly embraced in the society because it leads to the improved security by exposing the threats that people face.

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The Surveillance in the Public Place

Facilitating Security Operations

According to Monahan (2011), people tend to feel more secure, when they know that the authorities monitor the criminals, who target the innocent civilians. Nemeth (2010) adds that security is a crucial aspect of the public space. Before the introduction of surveillance in public places, cities like the New York have established community policing programs to improve security (Umbach, 2011). Community policing, which exemplifies an amalgamation of effective crime deterrence and community involvement, may bring significant benefit to the society, as public surveillance cameras improve problem-solving mechanisms, assist in apprehension and investigation, and amplify potential offenders’ awareness that they will be caught and put on trial (Umbach, 2011). The installation of surveillance systems has helped to solve major crimes, which could have taken ages to solve in the absence of surveillance systems. For example, the first images of the culprits came from CCTV footage a few hours after the incidence in the 2013 Boston Bombing (Kelly, 2014). The surveillance camera sites are established using GIS and crime patterns. The strategic placement of monitoring cameras ensures that a camera covers a large area and reduces blind spots, which can represent target points for criminals. Moreover, screening is applied in the airports in order to avoid smuggling and trafficking of illegal substances.

Monitoring is necessary in the modern world and, especially, in the era of terrorism. Through monitoring systems, the information regarding the plans of terror attacks is intercepted, and the attacks can be prevented. Monitoring the internet has also become a necessity because of the advancement in technology, which enables hackers to gain access to confidential information. According to Kovacs and Hawtin (2014), cyber spying by Chinese hackers is a primary argument used to support the controversial Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), which would permit the authorities to access the infinite quantity of user data without their permission. Although, the invasion of privacy is the primary concern, when it comes to surveillance; legal guidelines are developed to govern the process of monitoring (Akhlaque, 2015). Silva (2013) states that the security measures should consider the rights of the citizens for privacy. Such revelations prove that surveillance may violate the rights of people and the government must respect the people’s privacy.

Security against Theft in Stores

In the recent past, the stores have actively embraced the use of surveillance. In fact, the stores install CCTV cameras to monitor activities in the warehouse, enhance security and deter theft (Vigne, Lowry, Markman, & Dwyer 2014). The stores do not use surveillance in order to stop crime. However, the shops use cameras to monitor the operations of the store and prevent shoplifters and other thieves from leaving the store. Moreover, the cameras are used to monitor the employees’ activities particularly in the cash counters, as they discourage the employees from stealing (Vigne et al., 2014). Moreover, CCTVs record the activities of the store. Thus, the camera can detect a robbery and the material can be handed over to the authority in order to assist in identifying and apprehending the culprits.

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Securing Parking Lots

Surveillance cameras have also gained popularity in the parking lots. Thanks to the advancement in technology, many parking lots are now adopting smart parking technology (Fraifer & Fernstr?m, 2016). Many car parks use camera surveillance to establish the number of unoccupied slots as opposed to letting drivers to search for free spaces themselves. Additionally, the owners of parking lots invest in monitoring to guarantee the safety of the vehicles parked (Fraifer & Fernstr?m, 2016). Surveillance prevents breaking into parked vehicles and ensures that only the car owners pick their cars. Furthermore, the cameras monitor the way drivers are parking and driving their cars out of the parking lots. In the presence of surveillance powered guidance systems, the probability of accidents occurrence reduces significantly (Fraifer & Fernstr?m, 2016). Therefore, surveillance is convenient to parking lots.

Security at Home

The application of monitoring is not limited only to commercial applications. In fact, the cameras are also installed in homes in order to improve safety and guard against intruders. For example, surveillance cameras are gaining more and more popularity in Condos. The installation of supervision helps to enhance security and monitor, who is getting in and out of the building (Vigne et al., 2014). Any suspicious activity can be investigated further and appropriate action can be taken against the suspects. Moreover, the monitoring helps to prevent theft, as the thieves are afraid of stealing in the places with surveillance cameras. The robbers are aware of the fact that evidence, which links them to the crime, is readily available; thus, they could not escape punishment (Vigne et al., 2014). Such measures ensure that the resident’s security is guaranteed that makes them feel safer in their homes.

The Positive Impact of the Surveillance of Toronto’s Highway 407

Toronto Highway 407 is one of the largest road construction projects in the history of Canada that runs east-west just north of Toronto. The road’s Express Toll Route (ETR) was the first of its kind in the world; ETR forms a foundation for other electronic highway toll systems (Shum, 2013). The ETR system allows drivers to pay for road charge without stopping at the toll station. The ETR utilizes the use of wireless CCTV cameras, which relay data to roadside computers (Shum, 2013). The system matches the small electronic transponders, which are leased and attached on the windscreens by the vehicle owners. The cameras read the transponders at the entry and exit points (Shum, 2013). If the vehicle is not from the area or it lacks the transponder, the cameras take photos of the car number plates and transmit the information to roadside computers, which later send the information to the monitoring station (Shum, 2013). The data is used to obtain the information about the vehicle’s owner and a bill is sent to him/ her. The cameras are high quality and can take actual photos even under the condition of adverse weather. The drivers, who refuse to pay the highway usage charges, get their license renewal declined upon application.

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ERT has created convenience for many road users. Since the data is collected using the surveillance system and the bills are sent later to the vehicle owners, the drivers do not have to stop at the toll station (Shum, 2013). In contrast to the manually managed locations, where a driver has to stop and wait in line to pay, ETR provides the road users with the opportunity to make the payments later. The ETR ensures the smooth flow of traffic on the road and prevents traffic congestion. T report released in 2013 by the Conference Board of Canada Highway 407 states that ETR saves commuters an average of 26 minutes each day (Shum, 2013). The benefit of reduced traffic also includes lower fuel consumption, reduced vehicle maintenance costs and reduced stress because of traffic. The improvements would not be possible in the absence of proper surveillance systems. The primary concern of Express Toll Route user is the high costs associated with using the highway.

Conclusion

Surveillance is essential in our everyday’s life. In fact, the system can be seen as a cultural necessity. Though there are concerns about invasion of privacy, monitoring brings more benefit than harm in the society. Through surveillance, communication intended for crime purposes is intercepted and the crimes are prevented beforehand. The installation of surveillance cameras in public places has become a common phenomenon to improve security today. Additionally, CCTVs ensure the smooth running and allocation of parking slots and security against theft and accidents. Moreover, monitoring is applied in residential properties in order to improve safety. Surveillance is also employed in highways in order to help smooth traffic, for instance, in the Toronto Highway 407, where the establishment of Express Toll Route 407 helped traffic run smoothly. In the modern society, the current threats and technological improvements necessitate surveillance in order to improve safety and efficiency of such functions as the traffic movement and the checkups against the entry of contraband products or illegal immigrants into a country.

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Reflection

The first two assignments were helpful to me, when drafting this essay because they acted as a marking scheme by providing me with feedback on what I should avoid in my following assignment. Some of the flaws include inadequate citations, poor paragraph format, and grammatical errors. When writing this essay, I reflected on the mistakes I made in the earlier articles. Thus, I was sure of what to avoid doing in this work. Moreover, I used the first assignments to confirm my knowledge of the writing formats and, in particular, the APA style that I used in these tasks. I referred to the assignments to identify possible flaws that I might have made in formatting in order to avoid them in the current work. I also compared the current assignment with the earlier ones in order to establish whether I did citations incorrectly.

A crucial factor is the inclusion of reputable and highly reliable sources such as the peer reviewed sources that have been assessed to ascertain their credibility. My reason for using such sources was to ensure that I got reliable information that improves the quality of my essay. I searched the internet for scholarly sources and included other sources in order to have adequate information concerning the topic. Furthermore, I read the lecture notes to validate my research information and to make sure that my essay agrees with the course teachings.

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As a student, I acknowledge that I have weaknesses. Thus, I might need assistance from other students. In this regard, I consulted my peers in order to verify whether a source is peer-reviewed; friends helped me to identify some credible sources. However, my friends and I did not intend to copy each other’s assignment; thus, we helped each other by discussing issues and clarifying them.

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