The installation of security cameras on campus requires thoughtful consideration of factors that include an individual’s right to be free from invasion of privacy and the institution’s duty to promote a safe environment for all community members. While security cameras can provide valuable evidence in the event of an incident on campus, it is a passive system that is not monitored in real-time and cannot be expected to prevent crime. The following process is intended to outline the necessary actions for requesting security cameras on campus.
Exceptions to this process:
This process does not apply to cameras used for academic or educational purposes, including lecture capture. This policy does not address the use of webcams for general use, such as conducting Zoom or Skype meetings. Additionally, this policy does not apply to the use of video equipment for the recording of public events or performances. Requests for video recording of this nature can be sent directly to the Information Technology department.
To purchase and maintain security cameras and recording equipment requires a designated funding source. It is the responsibility of the requesting department/requestor to identify a funding source prior to submission of a request to the Information Technology, Campus Safety and Security and/or Campus Technology Committee. Cameras funded by departments/schools are installed and maintained from departmental funds. Alternative funding options may be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Video Surveillance and Recording System Policy:
The University’s Video Surveillance and Recording System Administrative Policy must be reviewed prior to submission of a request. Installation, regulation and control of the use of cameras/recording systems will follow the guidelines provided in the policy.
Approval - Camera Request Form:
Information Technology, Campus Safety and Security, and Facilities Services jointly approve new requests as well as requests endorsed by the Campus Technology Committee. These departments consider installation requests based upon: 1) Purpose of the Camera(s): deterrence of theft, promotion of safety, time lapse of ongoing construction; 2) Location: interior facing, exterior facing, field of view; and 3) Need: is a camera the appropriate option for accomplishing the purpose. As a result, the request form must be as detailed as possible to avoid delays in review. A request can be made for one individual camera or for a group of cameras. Information Technology and Campus Safety and Security serve as approvers but do not themselves determine areas that need monitoring.
The University’s Camera Request form can be found here: https://www.tacoma.uw.edu/it/uwt-video-camera-request
Licensing and Fees:
All costs associated with the purchase, installation, maintenance and management of equipment will be the responsibility of the requesting department/school. Annual fees will be incurred by departments/schools for their assigned cameras. Additional costs may be incurred for software installation and upgrades as required.
The University abides by all applicable privacy laws, which includes FERPA and HIPPA regulations.
Server maintenance will be performed by the Information Technology department. Associated costs for maintenance, if applicable, will be charged to the funding source determined at the time of installation.