Video Surveillance

Observation by means of optical-electronic equipment, in particular video surveillance in companies, organizations and facilities, is becoming increasingly important. A wide variety of motives motivate those responsible to observe certain areas of their company, organization or institution by means of video surveillance equipment. Due to a possible violation of the right to informational self-determination and other provisions of data protection law, it is necessary for the assessment of the permissibility of video surveillance to examine each surveillance measure for its legality. This is done, among other things, in the context of a comprehensive weighing of the interests of the responsible body that wants to process and use collected video streams or video images on the one hand and the interests of data subjects worthy of protection on the other.

In addition to the existence of a concrete necessity of the surveillance measure, the suitability, proportionality and appropriateness of the measures in the context of video surveillance must be reviewed and determined. In this context, video surveillance may only be used as a last resort if milder means are not available, e.g., to safeguard the right of the premises, to prevent vandalism or to prevent criminal acts (ultima ratio).

In addition to the necessary review of the legality of video surveillance, the co-determination rights of works councils or employee representatives (MAV) must be observed. When video surveillance systems are used, a company guideline, a works agreement or a service agreement must be drawn up and concluded. Another necessity are regulations on the handling and storage of the accumulated data. Both access and the scope of processing must be clearly regulated. Depending on the technical equipment used and the scope of its functions, the analysis procedures used and the storage periods for personal data must also be designed in accordance with data protection requirements.


Our law firm will be happy to advise you on the use of optical-electronic equipment (video surveillance) and we can offer you the following services in this regard:

  • Data protection-compliant design of video surveillance installations
  • Preparation of legal opinions on planned video surveillance installations
  • Consultation on the installation of video surveillance systems (site and building plot with the locations of the video cameras and their surveillance sectors)
  • Verification of technical functions of fixed or mobile video cameras
  • Legal requirements for the surveillance of publicly accessible areas (public paths, roads, parking lots)
  • Video surveillance on company premises, inside organizations, in the server room, in production facilities, in fire hazard areas, in visitor parking lots, etc.
  • Video surveillance in social facilities to monitor access to and exit from the facility
  • Video surveillance in shopping centers and parking garages
  • Performance and behavior monitoring in the context of video surveillance
  • Data protection review of possible evaluations during video surveillance
  • Compliance with storage periods for video images and video streams in the context of video surveillance (personal data)
  • Inspection and acceptance under data protection law of newly installed video surveillance systems
  • Creation of the required inventory of processing activities for the video surveillance system.
  • Preparation and conclusion of a contract for commissioned processing in the event of maintenance or remote access to the video surveillance system by outside companies or other third parties
  • Implementation and documentation of the required data protection impact assessment
  • Video surveillance in the context of criminal offenses and forwarding of video data to law enforcement authorities
  • Involving and informing works councils or employee representatives within the framework of statutory co-determination on planned or expanded video surveillance installations
  • Creation, negotiation and conclusion of a company policy, a works agreement or a service agreement on video surveillance
  • Creation and implementation of data protection training on video surveillance for employees in order to reduce fears