Understanding the rules for home security cameras in Belgium

The world of home security has seen a significant evolution over the years. From basic motion detectors to sophisticated alarm systems, homeowners now have a plethora of options to ensure their property’s safety. Among these, security cameras have gained immense popularity, offering real-time surveillance and peace of mind. However, with this advanced technology comes the responsibility to adhere to specific guidelines and regulations, especially in Belgium.

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Where Can You Place Your Cameras?

While you might be tempted to install cameras at every nook and cranny of your property, it’s essential to be aware of the legal boundaries. In Belgium, the primary rule is that cameras should primarily focus on the user’s property. This means that while you can have cameras pointing towards your garden, driveway, or entrance, they should not capture excessive footage of public spaces like sidewalks or streets. If any part of the public area is recorded, it should be kept to an absolute minimum.

Informing Visitors About Surveillance

Transparency is key when it comes to surveillance. The law mandates that individuals be informed if they are being filmed. But don’t worry, you don’t need to get every visitor to sign a consent form. A simple solution is to place a clear sign or pictogram (measuring at least 10×15 cm) at your property’s entrance, indicating the presence of surveillance cameras. This ensures that anyone entering your premises is aware and consents to being recorded.

Storage and Retention of Footage

While having surveillance footage can be crucial, especially in the event of a security breach, it’s essential to know how long you can retain this data. In Belgium, unless there’s a specific incident or crime captured, you’re allowed to keep the recorded footage for up to one month. After this period, it should be deleted to respect privacy regulations.

Declaration and Compliance

If you’re placing cameras inside your home, there’s no need for any formal declaration. However, the rules change when cameras are installed at the entrance of your house or in your garden. Homeowners are required to declare their video surveillance system to the police through the official website, http://www.declarationcamera.be/. This declaration needs annual validation and updates to ensure continued compliance.

Furthermore, homeowners should maintain a record of all image processing activities. This can be in electronic or handwritten format. The Data Protection Authority or the police may request access to this register at any time, ensuring that all surveillance activities align with the set guidelines.


Security cameras can be a valuable asset in ensuring the safety of your home and loved ones. However, it’s crucial to strike a balance between security and privacy. By understanding and adhering to the regulations set by Belgian authorities, homeowners can enjoy the benefits of surveillance while respecting the rights and privacy of others. Always stay informed, and when in doubt, consult with local authorities or experts to ensure your home security measures are both effective and compliant.