My recent trip to Philadelphia was enlightening. It has been widely reported that only 40% of the camera’s in the city’s $15 million video surveillance system work and the city auditor has pegged that number as low as 32%. Where are things at now?
In a recent discussion with the police I asked if they rely on that system for their work and what challenges an unreliable system may create. The answer was that the police rarely use the city system. When they arrive at a crime scene they look for private video cameras from banks, stores, churches, restaurants, etc., and request video archives. With the Pope’s visit and Democratic National Convention scheduled for the city, it will be interesting to note any demands the Secret Service and/or State Department may have related to video system reliability.
Could Viakoo help? Possibly, but phones are neither answered nor messages returned; thus it would appear the video system is unfortunately orphaned. That means the Office of Innovation & Technology is not maintaining it, the police are not using it and the Auditor is attacking it. But no one owns it. While this is unfortunate, you have to wonder if it is that unusual across US Cities.