The City of Bristol has 347 CCTV cameras, and a further 43 traffic cameras. All of the CCTV cameras have very powerful zoom, and ALL footage from ALL cameras is recorded, 24 hours a day. Don't think Bristol City Council don't have the capacity to do this, because they do. The BNET fibre network goes all over Bristol and takes the CCTV pictures in Digital back to a central HQ where they're monitored and recorded.
Furthermore, ALL of the traffic cameras are running ANPR, so any car they want to track can be.
Take a look at the amount of cameras just in the city centre:
That big blob in the centre of the map is at the new Carboot Circus development.
You might say; "Well, that's fine. The cameras will catch all the chavs that try to nick stuff from shops, and all the pikeys driving without insurance".
That's probably all it's used for now. But the point is, the capability exists for some serious abuse of power. Think about it, you can be tracked anywhere, pretty much, in the centre. Worse than that, if they spot you and want to know where you've been, they can find that out too. Oh, but they aren't interested in little old me, are they? After all,
If you've got nothing to hide, you needn't worry.
And are you actually, seriously, suggesting that you TRUST the government, local or national? Given everything that's happened? Fuck me, take the example of recent data losses, of which there has been ridiculous amounts. These are just the ones we know about! How many countless other "breaches" do you suppose have occured? (I love the word "breach" by the way, an attempt to make it sound better than it is. A bit like "abscond" instead of "escape").
The public sector has proven, time and time again, that they are simply not fit to deal with any kind of sensitive data. And yet Jacqui Smith still thinks we trust her plans for ID cards. The private sector fucking manage it, why don't the public sector? God knows they have enough cash thrown at it. Is it just Council "laziness"? Or is it more than that?
I've always thought the Public sector purely exists to give jobs to those who are otherwise unemployable in the private sector. I'd hope I would be proved wrong, but it seems pretty fucking unlikely so far.