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Surveillance, Car Parks & Security Lighting

This page contains some useful advice on deterring criminals from your business premises and reducing the fear of crime amongst your visitors and staff.


Ensure any barriers you put up don't provide a protective screen which criminals can hide behind whilst carrying out their activities. The area around the outside of your premises should offer good surveillance to detect offenders, ensure staff and visitor safety, and to allow early detection of fire and other emergencies.

This may be achieved in three ways:

  • Natural surveillance by people on-site, passing by or in nearby buildings.
  • Formal surveillance by security patrols or electronic surveillance. i.e. CCTV,   movement detectors etc.
  • Informal surveillance, i.e. Business Watch schemes, employee participation etc. 

Car parks

Car crime accounts for a high percentage of business crime costs and lost time.

Car parks should be in good view; well lit and safe to access from the buildings they serve.

Staff who are fearful about leaving a safe building for a poorly maintained and badly lit car park are unlikely to be motivated to 'get the job finished' on winter afternoons.

Remember, you have a duty of care to provide safe and secure environments for your staff. You could be held liable for injury or an attack on a staff member if the correct prohibitive measures have not been installed.

Professionally installed CCTV systems and guard patrols are ideal for car park security.

Apply for a Park Mark award to indicate that acceptable levels of safety and security for the users are in place. For more information visit the Park Mark website at:


Security lighting

Good lighting is essential, both as a security measure and as a valuable aid to reducing fear in your staff and visitors by creating a safe environment.

The type of lighting you require will depend on the level of risk, the geography of the area and the type of surveillance in place. Your supplier should advise you.

There are many different types of lighting systems available for particular purposes - from those which provide excellent colour rendition (e.g. metal halide) to those which provide low running costs (e.g. low pressure sodium), to give just a few examples.

Take care to ensure the lighting is positioned properly by seeking specialist advice. Poor lighting may assist intruders. On the other hand, it may cause a nuisance to your neighbours. Clause 102 of The Clean Neighbourhood and Environmental Act 2005 makes it a criminal offence to cause a nuisance from your lighting.

External lighting must be carefully designed and installed to work with other security equipment such as CCTV. Lights should be regularly checked to ensure that they are operating effectively.

Do you need a quick answer to a general question? Then we recommend you visit the national Ask The Police web site.