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Surveillance Tradecraft has been a great success since its publication in April 2010 with nearly 2000 copies sold in the first 10 months of publication in 26 different countries.

Over 4000 have now been sold and we have gone into a third re-print.

Surveillance Tradecraft continues to be the leading authority on surveilance training within the Enforcement, Security, Intelligence and Investigative sectors.

ISBN:978 0953537822

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24/01/13 - Written by Peter Jenkins

Surveillance Tradecraft Reprint

Surveillance Tradecraft Manual in its third reprint.… read more

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Over the recent past there have been various posts on a number of investigative related forums where there have been discussions about trespass, deploying trackers, using telephoto lenses, lifting bins, putting cameras on a house etc etc.. and every time someone pipes up ‘..but isn’t that illegal under RIPA..?’

In simple terms: NO IT DOESN’T!

Now then, to put it into simple terms, you can do what you like in the commercial world (carry out surveillance, follow people, follow cars, take photographs…) and RIPA has got absolutely nothing to do with it. Absolutely nothing, zero, zilch..

RIPA ONLY concerns YOU if you are employed by (or acting on behalf of) one of these public bodies listed (please read carefully now):-

Charity Commission
Criminal Cases Review Commission
Common Services Agency for the Scottish Health Service
A county council or district council in England & Wales
Department for Transport, for the purposes of:
Marine Accident Investigation Branch
Rail Accident Investigation Branch
Air Accidents Investigation Branch
Maritime and Coastguard Agency
A district council within the meaning of the Local Government Act (Northern Ireland) 1972
Department of Agriculture and Rural Development for Northern Ireland
Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment for Northern Ireland
Department of Health
Department of Trade and Industry
Environment Agency
Financial Services Authority
A fire and rescue authority
Fire Authority for Northern Ireland
Food Standards Agency
Gambling Commission
Gangmasters Licensing Authority
Government Communications Headquarters
Health and Safety Executive
HM Revenue and Customs
Home Office (for the purposes of the UK Border Agency)
Independent Police Complaints Commission
Information Commissioner
A Joint Board where it is a fire authority
Ofcom
Office of Fair Trading
The Pensions Regulator
Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland
Port of Dover Police
Port of Liverpool Police
Post Office Investigation Branch
Postal Services Commission
NHS ambulance service Trust
NHS Counter Fraud and Security Management Service
Northern Ireland Ambulance Service Health and Social Services Trust
Northern Ireland Health and Social Services Central Services Agency
Royal Navy Regulating Branch
Royal Military Police
Royal Air Force Police
Scottish Ambulance Service Board
A Scottish council where it is a fire authority
Scottish Environment Protection Agency
Secret Intelligence Service
Security Service
Serious Fraud Office
The special police forces (including the Scottish Drug Enforcement Agency)
The territorial police forces
Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust

Please Note: CPO, Surveillance Dude, Private Eye, Dog Handler is NOT on the list. If you are not acting on behalf on any of the above, never mention RIPA again for the duration of your natural life.

pantsIf you are one of those people who, on their investigation / security websites state: ‘Our company complies with the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 and the Human Rights Act 1998…blah blah, I challenge you, will call you a big liar and stand back from the heat as your pants catch fire.

It’s so simple people, if you are not on the above list, forget RIPA as if you have never heard of it. Simples..

Afternote: This article concerns RIPA and the private contractor. It is advised that any private surveillance is considered for necessity, proportionality and the possibilty of collateral intrusion.

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24/01/13 - Written by Peter Jenkins

RIPA For Dummies

The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 is very complex, Here is a Dummies guide that takes out all the nonsense, especially where private surveillance operators are concerned.… read more

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This is a bit long, so bear with me...... it will be worth it.

I have heard/seen discussions recently in respect of one training provider not recognising another’s qualifications in respect of surveillance, so here's my slant...

In respect of the CP Level 3 Certificate, the course was designed by various stakeholders in conjunction with the SIA who ‘rubber stamped’ it and had it accredited by Edexcel as a minimum 150 hour course. The course structure, lessons, topics and learning outcomes should be the same ‘minimum’ regardless of which training provider runs the course.

In respect of Surveillance Awards/Certificates/Diplomas, this is not the case. No governing body, the SIA (or anyone else) has had a say in what goes into surveillance training courses and qualifications.

Any training provider that offers these ‘qualifications’ in surveillance is offering their ‘OWN’ product in what is classed as a ‘Customised’ qualification (just like making widgets).

For example: Our (ISS) Btec Level 3 Award in Foot & Mobile Surveillance is classed by Edexcel as a ‘Customised Award’. It is a qualification that we (ISS) has designed and set a standard for our company. In some respects, it is OUR OWN course to which the level of training, the subjects taught and assessment has been decided by us and thus reflect in our specific high standards.

With me so far.....?

Now then... another surveillance training provider may also offer a Btec Level 3 Award (but their course will be called something slightly different to ours, as the title is copyrighted). Their course will also be a ‘Customised Award’ and it would have been designed by them to cover what THEY feel is right and to their own standards. In this instance, no two courses from different training providers give the same qualification or level of skills!

Let’s look at it like this: On a 2 week course, we (ISS) may carry out 60 hours of mobile exercises in the cars, where another TP only carries out 25 hours in their 2 weeks. Or they may spend 10 hours in rural OP’s practising camouflage whilst we don’t but teach Counter Surveillance or use public transport in the exercises... So each training provider sets its own course title, structure, content and level of qualification. As it is ‘Customised’, technically it is their own in-house training package.

In real practical terms if you have a Btec Level 3 in surveillance from ‘ISS’, another surveillance company might say that they do not recognise our training (and why should they, it’s our course?). On the flip side, why should we recognise any other TP’s qualifications? Especially when their standards and skill levels do not match ours (I can say this from experience).

Why am I mentioning all this? If you are choosing a training provider, the certificate that you have left your course with (if you passed) is only worth something to the outside world, if the company that you did your training with is respected and has credibility. It means that you can do what is says on the certificate....

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12/01/13 - Written by Peter Jenkins

Surveillance Qualifications For Dummies

I have heard and seen discussions recently in respect of one training provider not recognising another’s qualifications in respect of surveillance, so here's my slant...… read more