RIPA policy

Undertaking surveillance

Once an authorisation has been granted by a magistrate Investigating officers of the Council should bear in mind the following:

  • Covert surveillance or CHIS should only be undertaken for as long as it is needed for the purpose for which it is authorised. Surveillance should not be undertaken for longer periods than absolutely necessary. In short, surveillance should only be undertaken for as long as it is required to obtain the necessary information.
  • Officers should seek to reduce any collateral intrusion into the lives and business of the subject and also the subject’s family, colleagues or associated third parties.
  • The amount of private information received during the course of surveillance should be kept to a minimum. • Adequate safety and welfare checks have been carried out prior to the use of CHIS. Where the CHIS is not an employee of the Council or has not received sufficient training for this work, the officer in charge of the surveillance should have put in place measures to ensure that assistance is close at hand should this be required.
  • All officers should act diligently and professionally regarding their own and colleagues safety and the safety of any surveillance equipment at their disposal.