FRANLKLIN -- Franklin police are asking businesses and homeowners to register their security cameras to help them solve crimes.
The cost of home surveillance cameras is becoming more affordable, and this technology can be key when it comes to solving a crime.
"Think of it as the Neighborhood Watch for the 21st century," Rick Oliva, Franklin police chief said. "It`s a way to tap into existing technology. Camera registry programs are growing rapidly across the country."
The program has launched in Franklin. Business owners and homeowners are encouraged to register their security cameras.
"The big problem is finding witnesses. When we are investigating a crime, many times we canvass the neighborhood and go door-to-door looking for witnesses, and most of the time, especially during the day, we don`t find anybody because they`re all at work," Chief Oliva said.
Oliva said one of the most common crimes in the city is property crime. Residents FOX6 News spoke with on Tuesday, January 17th said they are in favor of the program.
"I`d totally ruin my privacy for that. I think it`s great," one neighbor said.
"A few weeks ago, there was a burglary in my neighborhood, so I think it is definitely prevalent around here," Chloe Westley said.
Chief Oliva said privacy concerns have been brought to his attention.
"Some people always raise a privacy concern. Our program is entirely voluntary. We promise to keep the location of the cameras confidential. It`s within the police department only," Oliva said.
Oliva said the owner of the surveillance camera has the right to decline turning over footage for any reason.
"I encourage anybody with home surveillance cameras to contact your local law enforcement agencies because it is a good way to, again, keep some extra eyes and ears on your neighborhood when you are not there," Oliva said.
It's also important to note that contrary to what some may believe, registering your camera doesn't mean the department can automatically tap into your footage.
FOX6 News told you about a similar program in Greenfield back in November. In Greenfield, police were set to hand out surveillance cameras to homeowners FOR FREE. CLICK HERE for details.