Privacy fears as surveillance footage broadcast on Chinese website

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 13 December, 2017, 4:32pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 13 December, 2017, 8:08pm

A Chinese live-streaming website has come under fire for airing feeds from surveillance cameras, Qianjiang Evening News reported on Wednesday.

The report said a man and a woman dressed in pyjamas were seen in footage aired on Shuidi, the live broadcast website operated by Qihoo 360 Technology.

More than 23,000 people watched the footage on the platform, which also identified the couple’s location, it said.

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In another feed from an office reception area, colleagues could be heard talking to each other, the report said, adding that workers at the company said they were shocked that their activities were being broadcast online.

The report was prompted by an open letter posted online, accusing Qihoo of unauthorised surveillance. The writer of the letter claimed to have visited some of the sources of the live feeds, where people said they had no idea they were being monitored.

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Qihoo said the streaming website was part of the company’s surveillance camera package but was set to offline by default. It said that if users chose to show the feeds online, they should safeguard the subjects’ privacy and ensure there were prominent signs notifying people that the area was being monitored.