Security camera systems enhance overall campus safety and security, deter crime and otherwise support the protection of people and property.
There is no higher priority at UB than the safety of the campus community. Security cameras are a valuable tool that University Police use to keep the community safe on a daily basis and during an emergency. Live video from these cameras is fed directly to the University Police Communications Center. Police Dispatchers have access to live and recorded video to help guide first responders to calls.
The University at Buffalo currently has over 1,000 security cameras across the North, South and Downtown campuses.
Our cameras feed into a server that has controlled access. Only University Police members are able to view the camera feeds from our blue light cameras. Some departments have installed their own cameras which feed into the main server. These departments can see the live video from their own cameras.
Cameras are placed to observe areas along sidewalks, at entrances to residence halls, high traffic areas such as bus stops, and all of the exterior blue light phones in our parking lots. In the event that someone calls for help from one of these phones, our Dispatchers can see the person calling for help.
The video server keeps recorded video for 30 days. If an incident is captured on video, a permanent recording is made and kept as part of the case record for the incident.
In order to determine if there is a video recording, you must file a police report with the department. An Officer will be dispatched to your location to interview you. That Officer can determine if the area is recorded by our camera system and will be able to ensure that any recorded video will be saved. Recordings can be saved for many reasons:
The university takes privacy concerns very seriously. We restrict access to the recorded video and we avoid placing cameras inside residential spaces (just at the entrances to dormitory or apartment areas). While there is no expectation of privacy in the public spaces on campus, we do protect the recorded video. We track every instance when video is accessed or saved.
Cameras can be installed in individual departments, at that department's own expense. The first step is to contact us and request a security survey of your space. An Officer who is certified in Crime Prevenstion through Environmental Design (CPTED) will work with your department to address safety concerns, including the potential need for cameras. Once that survey is done our technical staff will assist with getting quotes for installation and connection.
All camera installations must comply with the University's Safety and Security Camera Acceptable Use Policy.