Data | Chennai has the highest density of CCTV cameras in the world: report

A CCTV camera in Koyambedu, Chennai. File   | Photo Credit: K. Pichumani

Chennai had the highest number of CCTV cameras per sq. km. globally, according to a recent report by, which uses data up to 36 months old. Delhi and Hyderabad also featured in the top 10 list.

Six cities in the top 10 are in China, with London being the only city outside Asia to feature in the list. However, perception of the crime level in a city does not correlate with the number of CCTVs in a city.

Also read: Comment | Everyday voyeurism in a surveillance state

Chennai under watch

Chennai had as many as 657 CCTV cameras per sq. km., making it the city with the highest camera density in the world.

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Camera count

The chart plots the number of CCTV cameras in 130 cities worldwide against the number of cameras per sq. km. While three Indian (blue dots) cities — Chennai (1st), Hyderabad (2nd), and Delhi (8th) — featured in the top 10 list of most CCTVs per sq. km., as many as 20 out of the 30 most camera dense cities were from China (red dots).


Also read: Are India’s laws on surveillance a threat to privacy?

Not a deterrent

The chart plots the number of CCTV cameras per sq. km against the crime index* in 130 cities worldwide. Though India (blue dots) and China (red dots) had a similar density of CCTV cameras, the crime index in Chinese cities was markedly lower. Thus, more CCTV cameras do not necessarily correspond to lower crime rates as cultural, economic, and political factors also play a significant role in a city’s crime rate.


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Printable version | Feb 27, 2021 10:17:08 PM |

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