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U.K. Appoints Fraser Sampson as Biometrics and Surveillance Camera Commissioner

The U.K. government has appointed Fraser Sampson as the country’s new independent Biometrics and Surveillance Camera Commissioner, replacing the two part time posts of the Biometrics Commissioner and Surveillance Camera Commissioner. The statutory responsibilities and duties for both roles will remain the same.

The recruitment campaign was conducted in line with the Governance Code for Public Appointments. 

Fraser Sampson, who took up the post this March, will promote compliance with the Surveillance Camera Code and rules on police use of DNA and fingerprints.

“I’m delighted to have been appointed to cover these two distinct but increasingly overlapping roles. I look forward to working with all partners in what is a fast-moving and challenging area of balancing the public interest considerations with the rights of individuals.” said Sampson.

An Honorary Professor and Research Fellow at Sheffield Hallam University, Sampson is also a Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England & Wales. Between 2016 and 2019, he was Chief Executive of the Police, Fire & Crime Commissioner in North Yorkshire. Between 2006 and 2019, he was the Chief Executive and General Counsel for the Police & Crime Commissioner in West Yorkshire and the Executive Director of the Civil Nuclear Police Authority. He was also a police officer for West Yorkshire Police and the British Transport Police, between 1982 and 1996.

The Biometrics Commissioner and Surveillance Camera Commissioner roles were established by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 which introduced the regime to govern the retention and use by the police of DNA samples, profiles and fingerprints, and to promote appropriate overt use of surveillance camera systems by relevant authorities in England and Wales.

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