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How Long Should Law Enforcement Video Data Be Stored?



Technology’s influence on policing is nothing new. Law enforcement across the globe has been adopting new technology for decades. In the early 20th century, police departments started using fingerprinting, which was a new technology at that time. In the 1960s, the first 911 emergency calling service was introduced. Now, police use cameras to record activities, which makes data storage a big concern for police departments across the nation.


The length of time that a police department has to store video data typically varies by state. In Georgia, state law mandates that video recordings derived by body-worn devices or devices located in or on a law enforcement vehicle must be retained for a minimum of 180 days from the date the recording was originally captured.


Georgia requires law enforcement video recordings to be kept for at least 30 months if those recordings are related to certain things, such as a car accident, a detainment, an arrest, the use of force or pending litigation. If litigation has already begun, law enforcement videos must be stored until the case is adjudicated.


Advice Regarding Data Storage Technologies for Law Enforcement

It’s expected that laws governing the length of time that law enforcement has to retain video footage will continue to change. Luckily, advancements in data storage are expected to outpace the changes that might take place with legal video retention requirements.


With legal changes and technical advances predicted in the future, it’s generally wise for police departments to seek out low-cost data storage technology that has a high capacity to store videos. Ideally, law enforcement data storage systems will be able to offer unlimited storage on- and off-site without a cost that increases as time passes and more storage space is used.


If a municipality loses its law enforcement video footage, it can have serious consequences. For this reason, it’s vital for police departments to backup their data and have a disaster recovery plan in place that will successfully enable them to recover their data quickly and seamlessly. In general, it’s wise to test your data backup at least once every three months.


It’s crucial for law enforcement to keep their video recordings safe, confidential and private. And their video footage must remain that way until it can be released through the appropriate legal means.


If a department is using outdated data storage or their data storage technology isn’t properly maintained, it may pose a problem when it comes to keeping its video recordings secure. Modern, well-maintained law enforcement data storage solutions must be used to keep video secure and IT experts must take the necessary steps to guard data from hackers and other cybersecurity threats.


Choose SANDirect for Your Data Storage Needs

If your city needs a data storage solution for law enforcement videos, SANDirect can identify the options that are available to you. We offer flash, hybrid, cloud-based solutions and many others that are ideal for police departments and municipalities of all sizes. There’s no reason to research data storage technologies on your own when our experts can find and implement the technology you need to store your law enforcement video footage.


Learn how SANDirect does business now and then complete our data storage checklist so we can find the data storage solutions that are best for your precinct or city today.

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