Who's watching you?

By Dan Wells - bio | email

Did you know cameras have an eye on all aspects of your life here in the Tri-state, from town centers to transport systems, office towers to banks?

Believe it or not, there's probably even a camera on you at your favorite shopping center or when you visit a neighbor's house.

"I don't think a lot of people do, I didn't know there was a bunch around here until you told me," said Cincinnati resident Emily Byrne.

How about when your at the ATM? Driving on the freeway? Or even on your neighbors front porch?

The watchful eye of these cameras peer at millions of ordinary Americans every day, every hour and every minute.

"My sense is if you come to a pubic place you want to be safe and the city is encouraging people to come to this public place so they need to offer the security to make that a safe experience," said Cincinnati resident Ron Hoover.

These camera systems have become increasingly popular because of safety concerns. They helped document crime in action, and prevent would be criminals from striking.

"Cameras are important they do provide a level of security, but I've always thought unless there is somebody on the other end watching the monitors all the time it can lead to a false sense of security," said Ken Grossman with Xavier University.

At both Xavier University and Newport on the Levee, the latest in technology is mixed with security personnel to keep both students and consumers safe in public areas.

But both organizations also agree having more help in the form of cameras certainly doesn't hurt.

"It's just like an insurance policy," said Jim Craycroft with Newport on the Levee. "You don't know how much you miss it till you don't have it."

So do you wonder how many watchful eyes are on you?

"We approximately have over 115 cameras here on the property," said Craycroft. "Of course its about two city blocks and its an integrated role along with the personnel in making Newport on the Levee a safe place."

"I think its good. I feel safer that way," said Byrne.

Good thing people feel that way, because it's getting more prevalent everywhere. In London, England there are half a million government surveillance cameras alone trained on citizens just like you and me.

More security measures are being taken in the private sector as well. A growing number of Tri-state residents are installing security systems to keep an eye on everything happening outside their doors.

Now some civil libertarians fear there could be abuses because there aren't any local, state or federal laws that specifically govern the video surveillance of Americans. But what can you do...when you don't know.

"If you look up in the sky and its clear you might see a satellite go over and you maybe surprised to know how much that satellites can see," said Hoover.