Does a CCTV help solve crimes in the city?

Of course the answer is no. I know that. But thanks to CCTV, nowadays, more crooks and delinquents involve in crimes can easily be identified by police with help from close circuit television camera.

Well, having cameras everywhere it’s not the solution to preventing criminal activities but it somehow helps to indentify bits and pieces of what actually happened in a crime scene, right?

Majority of crimes like robbery in the store, being run over by a vehicle or motorcycle, snatchers, park fights, and just about anything that you do, even having lewd conduct and inappropriate behaviors, if there’s a CCTV that will be good evidence and proof of actions.

The past few years has seen a rise number of establishments, and different places here in the country having CCTV camera. It has become part of security technology.

I remember after the 9/11 and that terror attacks in London years ago, they’ve started to put more and more surveillance cameras everywhere especially the streets of New York and London. Correct me if I’m wrong, ok. Majority where okay with that but some were also against it? Having CCTV in different major locations would be easier for police and other intelligence unit to quickly identify vehicles use for terror attacks or persons of interest who would leave bags (which could contain explosives) in lamp post. Things like that.

Surely there are CCTV Cameras here!
Surely there are CCTV Cameras here!

Here in the Philippines, as I’ve said, many establishments have CCTV already in place. However unlike London or New York streets, I’m not really sure if we have CCTV in other locations here in the metro. There’s always MMDA everywhere to pacify whatever… but anyway…

Last week, while I was watching local news, there was a segment for crime reports, and I was surprised because all of their reports featured crimes that were captured by a CCTV cam; speeding SUV injured (and left comatose) a vacationing Swiss-Filipino in Palawan. Cam footage help indentify the possible suspect. Another was a speeding motorcycle bump two other parked motorcycles. Another incident was that of two men robbing a store, and another crime story featured a doctor who was robbed by an old lady inside a hospital. These crimes were all recorded by a CCTV camera. It is big help indentifying criminals and crooks.

I think that it is good to CCTV in areas where crimes are rampant, where carjack and kidnappings always happens. Places like schools area and business districts like Taguig, Makati, and Ortigas. Here in QC (Quezon City) where I live (I’ve never live anywhere else except QC) majority of carjack/car napping always happens here. Having CCTV cameras is  good. It seems however that only establishments have those. I’m thinking it wouldn’t hurt to put some surveillance in major streets in the city. I’m not sure how many agrees with this. Do you think it is alright to put a surveillance camera?

Now that is only for major streets. What about buses? You know that a lot of silliness and crimes ranging from petty to serious ones mostly happens inside the bus. There are weirdoes preaching end of their world, drunkards sitting beside you, sex maniacs, snatchers, robbers, hijackers.

I remember some years back about the news that MMDA wanted to have CCTV inside commuter buses due to recent wave of bus bombing but aside from that they also wanted to somehow record anything suspicious, or the silliness and crimes going on inside.

Locals were divided against placing cameras on board. Some argued that is like invading personal space and private time. Bus operators and drivers were divided. Some like the idea but others cold on it. I have no idea if buses have cameras on board nowadays. I don’t think it’s bad though.

Of course having CCTV should be put to good use and not for any other crazy activities like secretly filming sex acts or anything like that.

Anyway, as more crimes are being done by savvy crooks, Filipinos have become more wiser and tech savvy and are placing more of close circuit cameras and other forms of surveillance to somehow deter and if not to possibly record whatever crimes may occur.

So careful crooks, Big Brother can see everything!

Post Author: Sugar (66 Posts)

A Filipino. Living and working in Manila. Has a soft spot for expats. Always have an opinion about anything and everything.

How to Move to the Philippines Manual


  1. says

    It can help if you have the man power to review the tapes. Which is not the car in the Philippines so I have noticed. Here in the USA there are folks that does just that on a daily bases and broadcast if the police or business gives the (ok). For the most part most people don’t really care to be involved and that is world wide. In the Philippines most won’t do anything to stop a crime even the police really won’t get involved unless they are standing there. Sad fact but I have seen it happen on to many occasions. CCTV is a tool not a crime stopper and to think CCTV will do so is a foolish notion. Criminals know they may or may not get caught and they know full well they are on camera. If the were smart enough they would know how to bypass the CCTV by a remote server. Then again most are not that good.

  2. RandyL says

    Hi Sugar, good article. I will have to disagree with your own answer to your article’s ‘Title Question’ though, as I know many crimes can be and are solved with the use of CCTV’s. I think what you meant to say is “prevent” instead of “solve”. It seems many criminals still carry out their premeditated actions without giving any thought to whether their actions are being recorded by cameras. This is either out of ignorance or desperation….pick one. As for me, I feel a little safer in certain places knowing that there are cameras placed as a deterrent to crime. I guess we will never know just how many crimes they do prevent, but I know if it prevents one serious crime, it could be well worth the inconveniences it seems to pose. Someday, CCTV will be so prevalent, that maybe we can all feel safer for it. One thing will be for certain…everyone will have no choice but to walk around with their best smile on! 😉

    • sugar says

      Hi Randy – Yeah, I forgot the word prevent… he he. Seems much better and more apt. To have cctv cameras all over the metro requires, money, I think. It’s not priority of every city though. Thanks.

  3. says

    Matthew, just how many bank robberies do you suppose would take place in the U.S. on a daily basis without any surveillance in place? It’s silly to think that CCTV is not a crime stopper. What it doesn’t stop is stupidity! Wake up man.

  4. says

    As I said it is a “tool”. Read more carefully next time. CCTV can not stop crime it is a tool to catch crimanals. I know more about law enforcement then you think. I will not debate you on this subject.

  5. says

    The purpose of CCTV is to prevent and reduce crime through one or more of the following: Deterrence, Prosecution, Fear Reduction, and Monitoring and Intervention. Your right, it is a tool. A tool that works to prevent many crimes.

  6. says

    I have 3 CCTV cams at my house on the outside, 2 on the inside, motion detector alarms, Driveway alert alarms and signs. And we live in a upscale subdivision. It does not stop all crime but it will deter the heck out of it. You can’t even cross my property line without us knowing :)

  7. Don says

    I am all for putting CCTV cameras up and down EDSA, NLEX, SLEX and major expressways. Keep an eye on the errant drivers and identify breakdowns for traffic reasons. But then, would also rather have the govt spend to upkeep the roads and not waste on things like the bike only land on EDSA and Commonwealth. What nonsense.

    • sugar says

      Hi Don – Agree ! Nobody even bikes in the city! But then I still see motorcycles weaving along side buses on EDSA.. pretty dangerous there.

  8. says

    Motion detectors, interior alarm, with strobes and 131db alarm, exterior alarms, Steel door with steel frame, all doors alarmed all windows alarmed. Exterior lighting with backup for brownout, Bear mace in the extra large bottles in all rooms in strategic locations. So I would say I am good. If you get past all that you deserve to get in. But your not sneaking in, The alarm system also calls up to 5 cell numbers and sends text. I guess being military my force protection is always on high alert. But like I said I live in a brand new gated guarded community but I don’t take that for granted.

  9. peterjoy says


    do u know mate like them or hate them the cctv cams are every where and yes here in taasie we have them and we are now geting new ones too i hope may be this time thay may have them on andif thay do it may just work dont u think u see up in 4ways here in devnport thay had 3 brak ins 3 nights but thay did not have the bloody cams on did thay hehhehe so what good was thay too see who it was and in most times u can be dead by the time the cops got there to stop u from being shot or busted up ok so u tell me are thay working i let u work that one out ok…….god bless sugar keep up the good work ok….peter martin tassie

    • sugar says

      Hi Peter- Gosh, you sound like that character from one of my favorite books ( How Late, It Was, How Late). He he. Thanks for sharing mate!

  10. corjo says

    C.C.T.V. along with number plate recognition software has played a large part in preventing Terrorism attacks here in Europe.

  11. Tim Sharky says

    What about CCTV in taxis? They have them in many major cities around the world. That’ll stop the scamming taxi drivers :)

    • sugar says

      I’m not sure about cctv cams inside taxis.. Would that be like dashboard cam. like the police? Taxi operator would probably not go along…

  12. gerry says

    Here in London any car can be traced by CCTV all through it’s journey in london.

    Criminals also can be followed shop to shop, street to street, of course it doesn’t stop a lot of them but it also identifies most.

    even in my quiet street we have CCTV. If you have nothing to hide it isn’t a problem IMO.

    • sugar says

      Hi Gerry – even in your quiet street… I think that’s too much cctv. There are homes here with sensors, and guards.. yes surveillance too.

  13. jonathan says


    Definitely, CCTVs help solve crimes but not to prevent it. There was even one incident where the CCTV was removed and stolen by the criminal himself all recorded on tape. It was in the news, of course, this happens only in the Philippines. In your home, you can set up regular webcams as CCTVs with the aid of a free software. Just download and voila you have your own monitor. It’s much cheaper to set up too and there’s even an option that the sofware will e-mail you what it’s recording.

  14. sugar says

    Well, Jonathan I just would like to see cctv probably in locations such as EDSA or Makati. Not really on homes.. but it’s helpful too. Thanks.

  15. Mark G. says

    Hi Sugar,

    Here in Cleveland, Ohio they have CCTV on the buses and in various places around the city. The ones on the buses have aided in apprehending criminals after the fact. Some of the recordings are very graphic and disturbing. There are also CCTV cameras in the shopping mall downtown. Recently a vendor who is a friend of mine had his location robbed. When asked if the perpetrator had been caught on film the mall security stated that the cameras in that part of the mall weren’t working that night. Quite a coincidence wouldn’t you say? The point being they are only good if they are working and usually only after the fact. That said I’d rather have them around than not. Like my mom used to say about locking the screen door; ‘It keep the honest people honest’, lol.

    • sugar says

      Hi Mark – Thank you for sharing. Yep, what good is a cctv if it’s not working. I think so too they;re good to have within crowded places in the metro.

  16. Ricardo Sumilang says

    Hi Sugar- There is no question that a functioning CCTV has a significant role in both deterring and helping solve a crime. Any would-be criminal would think twice about committing a crime anywhere CCTVs are visible. Where crimes are committed with or without the knowledge of the criminal(s) that his/her act is being recorded, the CCTV may be the law enforcement’s most valuable tool in solving the crime after the fingerprint. In major retail stores, CCTVs are all over the place. Enclosed in dark plastic bubbles installed on the ceiling at strategic locations throughout the store, they are the store’s theft prevention unit’s best friend against shoplifters. Not just shoplifters, mind you, but also against employee pilferage. You see that dark, plastic bubble directly above the cash register? It’s there not just to help identify a robbery suspect, but also to keep the cashier honest. Without the CCTV above the cash register to act as a deterrent, who knows how many of the cashier’s friends and relatives have been passing through the register without paying for the merchandise? And share the loot together after work? :)

    • sugar says

      Hi Ricardo – convenience stores, mini marts and other 24 hour stores should have cameras. They are the ones prone to robbers. I think banks too and the one with ATM machine.. not directly above but within the vicinity

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