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ORCA refresher

ORCA is short for online refresher CCTV assessment. The CCTV trainer Gordon Tyerman is about to launch such a course, about one hour long, aimed at the CCTV operator who has a public space surveillance licence from the Security Industry Authority (SIA) – and who may have had it for a dozen years or more, without by law requiring the least training since, despite numerous changes in the law and technology.

As Gordon, pictured, told Professional Security, under the Private Security Industry Act 2001, from the mid-2000s various ‘licensable‘ roles, to use the SIA’s term, including contracted CCTV operators of public space CCTV, had to have an SIA licence. A course you have to pass to apply for the ‘badge’ is classed as a level two on the qualifications scales, ‘and has not changed in any great shape since that time’. The SIA have reviewed this course as part of a wider ‘refresh’ of what the regulated security sector requires of training qualifications; and the newer qualification standards will now be introduced in April next year, later than expected due in part to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Gordon said: “The CCTV industry has often said that refresher training would be highly beneficial given that some SIA CCTV operators may have possessed their badge for over 15 years without any up to date training. The recent SIA skills summit [in March, featured in the April and May 2020 print editions of Professional Security magazine] discussed the need for refresher training and they are working towards producing some guidance for licenced operators.”

A separate hat that Gordon, a former Surrey Police man, has worn for some years is that of one of the volunteers aiding the now-outgoing (after his six-year term expired, without the Home Office naming a successor or replacement body) Surveillance Camera Commissioner Tony Porter. Gordon’s headed the ‘training’ strand of Tony Porter’s wide-ranging strategy. For it’s little use CCTV operators being well trained and gathering clear and full imagery of a crime, if that evidence is not securely and promptly passed to the police, and police don’t make best use of it in courts to prosecute offenders. Equally, courts have to know how to show the video.

Hence wider training is being developed for other roles, in the police, Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and HM courts and Tribunals. This has been led by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner as part of his national strategy. Given the restrictions in place from Covid-19, there is no time scale for such training, but Professional Security understand that the aim is to have something published this year.

About CCTV Training

Gordon offers SIA CCTV licence training; and runs a mobile CCTV unit, with cameras and digital recording equipment on board, hired out typically for monitoring temporary venues, such as horse racing and other outdoor events; and related advisory services such as event planning, CCTV lighting and strategy. Visit

More in the August 2020 print edition of Professional Security magazine. See also how we did taking the course.


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