These 6 Cities Are the Most Surveilled in America

Six cities landed on a worldwide top 50 list of cities with the most surveillance cameras per person. Cities in China took eight out of the top 10 spots.

Our cities are under constant surveillance. Take a walk down the street and see how far you can go without seeing a surveillance camera aimed at you. The amount of cameras and frequency will depend on which part of the world you are in.

It is well-known that China is under heavy surveillance, but how do cities in the United States compare?

A new study released by Comparitech, a tech research website, lists the world’s most surveilled cities. Unsurprisingly, eight of the top 10 are located in China. London sneaks in at number six, while Atlanta lands at 10. Five other U.S. cities made the top 50. Here they are in order starting with the most surveilled.

Most Surveilled Cities in the U.S.

  1. Atlanta
  2. Chicago
  3. Washington D.C.
  4. San Francisco
  5. San Diego
  6. Boston

The study ranked cities based on the number of cameras per 1,000 people. The number one city on the list, Chongqing, China, has 2,579,890 cameras for 15,354,067 people, or 168.03 cameras per 1,000 people.

In comparison to Atlanta, the most surveilled state in the country, there are 7,800 cameras for 501,178 people, or 15.56 cameras per 1,000 people.

You will likely find two different types of opinions when it comes to mass surveillance. On one hand, there are some serious privacy issues having this many cameras watching people at all times. On the other hand, there are many beneficial use cases and security applications out there.

The study also compared the number of public video surveillance cameras with the crime and safety statistics and found that, “Broadly speaking, more cameras doesn’t necessarily result in people feeling safer.”

You can read the full study, here.

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About the Author


Steven A. Karantzoulidis is the Web Editor for Security Sales & Integration. He graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a degree in Communication and has a background in Film, A/V and Social Media.

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