Ask a Librarian

Ask a Librarian

Security Camera Policy

The TMC Library uses security cameras to improve the safety and security of library users and staff by discouraging violations of the Library’s Code of Conduct, to assist library staff in preventing the occurrence of any violations, and, when necessary, to provide law enforcement assistance in prosecuting criminal activity while adhering to applicable federal, state, and local law concerning the confidentiality of library records and the protection of individual privacy.

Camera Location

Cameras may be installed in locations where individuals lack a reasonable expectation of privacy. Examples include common areas of the Library such as entrances, near book and media collections, public seating areas, library technology, study rooms, and areas prone to theft or misconduct.

Cameras will not be installed in areas of the Library where individuals have a reasonable expectation of privacy, such as restrooms or private offices. Nor are they positioned to identify a person’s reading, viewing, or listening activities in the Library.

At no time will any audio be recorded using the security cameras.


The Library has no obligation to monitor the cameras in real time. As the cameras are not constantly monitored, Library staff and patrons should continue to take appropriate precautions for their safety and for the safety of their personal property. The Library is not responsible for the loss of property or personal injury.

Recorded data is secured in a controlled area. Video recordings will typically be stored for no longer than 60 days. As new images are recorded, the oldest images will be automatically deleted.

Access to Digital Images

Video data is recorded and stored digitally. Recorded data is considered confidential and secure. Access to live feeds of images is available to staff at the circulation desk in order to monitor current activity. Access to recorded video data is limited to IT and Circulation staff.

Access by Law Enforcement and Patron Privacy

Video surveillance records are not to be used directly or indirectly to identify the activities of individual Library patrons except as viewed in relation to a specific event or suspected criminal activity, suspected violation of Library policy, or incidents where there is reasonable basis to believe a claim may be made against the Library for civil liability. Authorized individuals may use a still shot or selected portions of recorded data to request law enforcement review for assessing the security risk of a specific individual or for investigating a crime on library property. Video data will be made available to law enforcement upon presentation of a valid court order or subpoena establishing probable cause to review the data.

The Library shall retain a copy of the request. Recorded data will be accorded the same level of confidentiality and protection provided to library users by Texas state law and the Library’s policies with respect thereto. If an incident occurs, the video documentation will be kept for a period of 3 months. If an agency, such as the police department, requests video it must be requested in that time period.

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