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Number of CCTV cameras in South Korea 2013-2019

The South Korean national and local governments have been installing tens of thousands of closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras every year in public places. As of 2019, there were almost 1.15 million cameras in operation. This is an increase of around 200 percent in comparison to five years ago. Throughout the past years, the number of cameras newly installed each year has been close to or even exceeded one hundred thousand.

Purpose and benefits of CCTV cameras

Out of all these cameras, around half were installed for the purposes of facility safety and fire prevention, and approximately 45 percent were installed for crime prevention. A further four were for traffic law enforcement and various related data collection purposes. CCTV cameras are proving to be particularly beneficial in law enforcement, with the police admitting that CCTV records help solve the majority of serious crimes. Thus, the first step in any police investigation now is to obtain these records. In addition, CCTV records assist investigators searching for the cause of accidents.

Should there be additional CCTV cameras?

Due to these benefits, there have been calls for the installation of additional CCTV cameras to eliminate blind spots. However, there are concerns over the possibility that the government will be able to use the cameras, and the data they collect, to wield excessive power over citizens' lives, invading their privacy.
Regardless of what policy the current and future Korean governments will choose to pursue, the percentage of year-on-year changes in the number of CCTV cameras has been steadily decreasing. Nevertheless, the total number of cameras has not decreased.

Number of installed closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras in public places in South Korea from 2013 to 2019

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Release date

May 2020


South Korea

Survey time period

2013 to 2019

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Statistics on "Cameras"

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