RIPA surveillance policy
This policy governs how we carry out surveillance as part of investigations, and how we comply with the Human Rights Act (HRA) and Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA).
The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) sets out the circumstances in which certain types of surveillance can take place. Regulation is necessary to protect individuals’ human rights, and covert surveillance must be authorised in advance.
The council rarely uses covert surveillance as part of investigation; covert surveillance can only be authorised in relation to matters which involve a criminal offence punishable by imprisonment of 6 months or more or are related to under age sale of alcohol and tobacco. Because of this, it is unlikely that directed surveillance will ever be available or appropriate.
For the surveillance to be considered for approval it be must be for a specific case and both necessary and proportionate. Authorisations, if granted, will be specific and time limited.