There are a number of ways that you can protect your property, either commercial or residential across the country. One of those ways is to introduce video surveillance recording. Owning video cameras and maintaining camera surveillance recording is something that many residents across the country take advantage of daily. This is something that gives them a sense of security and protection for their personal belongings. The advanced technology of video surveillance allows residences to hide cameras in places like the doorbell, capturing all come up to the front door, as well.
With a recording on their property, however, those who come in contact with the home and may not be aware of the recording device may have some issues. While video recording is used to deter crime on private property, it is essential to make sure that you, as the owner, are also in compliance. Below are the state laws in Maryland regarding surveillance recording, and who may be recorded.
Video Recording and Audio Recording Are Not the Same
When it comes to recording someone’s actions and their conversations, the state of Maryland sees these two surveillance recordings as separate entities. Video surveillance recording refers to recording someone or others and their actions while on the property. Audio recording takes surveillance a step further and has the ability to record conversations between one or more persons on the property. Audio can be attached to some types of video surveillance cameras and is also used to tap into phone lines on the property, recording conversations between two or more individuals. There are separate laws and regulations for each type of surveillance in Maryland.
It Is Legal to Have Surveillance Recording
While other states and communities may have their own laws regarding surveillance recording on personal property and businesses, it is legal in the state of Maryland. As a property-owning citizen, you are within your rights to have video surveillance posted around your home both externally and internally. There is no limit to how many cameras you can have posted on your property, allowing you to cover the entire front, back, and sides of your property. Anyone who comes onto the property in the view of the camera(s) can and will be recorded. This footage is also saved in most cases and stored so that it can be reviewed later if necessary. While video surveillance is legal and allowed in Maryland, there are some restrictions regarding this surveillance, such as where it is
Video Surveillance Locations
Some surveillance may record beyond their property lines, picking up traffic on the highway or in neighboring yards. This is not illegal, especially when it is highlighting a public area or an area that is able to be seen by others easily. Property owners can place these cameras along the perimeters of their property on the home and out in the lawn areas to track movement and actions. Most direct their cameras at the front and back entrances of the home, as well as any windows along the sides where intruders will attempt to enter the property illegally.
Places, where surveillance cameras cannot be placed, are areas where privacy is expected, such as dressing rooms in the commercial buildings and restrooms in both commercial and residential properties. While you may place surveillance cameras inside your personal property, areas like a restroom are off-limits to video recording, as it is an invasion of privacy. Obtaining video surveillance for the exterior of the home or business is within the rights of the property owner as long as they are only observing and monitoring the actions of those on the property.
No Consent or Disclosure Required
Not only is it legal for these residents to allow camera surveillance on their property, but they can record anyone who comes onto the property without their consent. This means that they also do not need to disclose the fact that their home has video surveillance to anyone looking to come on the property. While some security companies provide the materials to notify others of your recording and surveillance, they are not required to be posted.
This lack of consent or disclosure is only true with video surveillance. In the event that audio surveillance were found on the property, consent would be needed before any voice recordings were processed.
Audio Surveillance Is Not Legal
Maryland’s residents are not allowed to record private conversations with audio surveillance on their property without consent, however. In the event that a Maryland resident is caught recording private conversations, even though it may be on their property, without consent, there would be legal consequences pursued. This comes with up to five years in prison and a fine of $10,000 if you are found guilty.
Maryland is one of twelve states that require all recorded conversations to include the consent of each conversation participant. These recordings are not legal in court when there has been no consent given. This means that no audio can be used on the external surveillance that is used to observe property or on phone calls and lines.
Know Your Laws
Before you choose your video surveillance cameras to post on your private property, be aware of what you can have legally in the state of Maryland. When you post these cameras that are only video surveillance, make sure that they are only pointed in the direction of public or community areas. Having these video surveillance cameras posted in areas where privacy is expected by guests, customers, or patrons is illegal.
While you are able to disguise cameras, do not attempt to record any audio surveillance without the knowledge and consent of those speaking in the conversation. This could lead to a list of legal trouble for you and not applicable in court.
If you are in need of a surveillance quote for your personal property, give Mobile Video Guard a call today for more information. In addition to the other security features offered by our team, we can legally secure your home or business, providing you with the peace of mind you are looking for. We are ready to secure your property today.