Surveillance powers

Our powers are set out in the acts listed below and you can download our policy:

Councils can undertake covert surveillance to detect or stop a criminal offence. This approach is used rarely and only in certain situations.

The above legislation ensures:

  • these activities are lawful
  • we don’t compromise the rights of anyone we investigate

We are inspected regularly to make sure that we comply with legislation.

Each case of covert surveillance under the Regulation of Investigation Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) must be approved by East Sussex County Council authorised officers. Strict tests are carried out before approval is given for any activity. Local authorities must then seek judicial approval prior to using RIPA covert techniques. Communications Data under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA) must be similarly approved by Council officers before an application can be made via the National Anti Fraud Network (NAFN).

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