Security Camera Laws in Colorado: Explained (2023)

For good reasons, Colorado is the sixth fastest-growing state in the nation. Colorful Colorado’s friendly people, year-round outdoor activities, and beautiful scenery are just some of the things that make it a great state.

With so much growth and rapid development, security issues are bound to follow. As a result, towns like Denver have seen an upsurge in property crime since 2020. According to Denver police data, burglaries increased by 23 percent in 2020, robberies increased by 9%, auto theft increased by 61 percent, and stealing from cars increased by 39 percent over the preceding four years. So, it’s no wonder that security cameras are in high demand.

Security cameras and video surveillance are subject to specific requirements in Colorado. That’s why, before installing or upgrading your security system and cameras in Colorado, you should familiarize yourself with the state’s surveillance rules and regulations. This post will answer some frequently asked questions about Colorado’s security camera laws.

Everything About Security Camera Laws in Colorado

As per security camera laws in Colorado, you can have surveillance cameras on your property for security purposes, but it is illegal to record or monitor footage for unlawful or malicious intentions. Additionally, recording audio without the consent of all involved parties is also prohibited.

Colorado’s regulations concerning video surveillance of neighbors allow surveillance cameras on one’s private property to monitor activities. However, there are specific restrictions governing the use of the recorded footage.

While monitoring your property using cameras is within your legal rights, it is crucial to consider your neighbors’ privacy.

Suppose your surveillance cameras capture footage of your neighbor’s property. In that case, ensuring that the footage is not used to intrude on their privacy or engage in illegal activities is essential.

Additionally, make sure that your surveillance cameras are not pointed in a manner that captures private areas of your neighbor’s property, such as bedrooms or bathrooms.

colorado views and a security camera

What is considered illegal surveillance in Colorado?

In Colorado, privacy rules make it illegal to record someone without their permission in cases where the subject has a reasonable expectation of privacy.

While video surveillance is generally allowed on public or private property in Colorado, you cannot install cameras in locations where people anticipate privacy.

This is true whether the surveillance camera is installed in your house, private place, or business place.

Existing Video Surveillance Recording Law

Colorado did not pass any significant video surveillance laws in 2021. However, most of the laws related to video surveillance in Colorado are covered under CO Rev Stat § 18-7-801 (2016), which highlights the offenses relating to morals and criminal invasion of privacy if: 

  • A person knowingly observes or takes a camera photograph of another person’s intimate parts, without that person’s consent in a situation where the person being observed or photographed has a reasonable expectation of privacy.

Is Colorado a two-party consent state for recording?

Based on local law enforcement, Colorado is a one-party consent state regarding video surveillance and audio recordings.

This means that only one party to communication needs to be aware of a recording to consent to the lawful creation of the recording. In a one-party consent state, the general rule is that you can record it if you are part of the conversation.

Suppose you are trying to record other individuals in a setting without participating in the conversation. In that case, it’s only legal if they’re in a public area — and thus have no reasonable expectation of privacy — or if you tell at least one of the participants that you’re recording. Otherwise, you run the risk of eavesdropping, which makes you liable for legal action.

Is it legal to record audio on security cameras in Colorado?

In Colorado, like all one-party consent states, audio surveillance needs the consent of at least one participant in the conversation before a recording can take place.

So, is it legal to record audio on security cameras in Colorado? The truthful answer is yes, as long as you meet specific requirements.

Audio and video surveillance must adhere to state law for personal or commercial reasons. For private individuals and business owners, Colorado has particular restrictions limiting audio recording and video surveillance. Fines and jail time are possible penalties for installing cameras and breaking these laws.

Colorado Audio Recording Laws

In Colorado, recording audio conversations generally requires the consent of at least one person involved, except when the recording is on one’s property for security or business reasons and the public is notified, as outlined in §18-9-304 and 305, C.R.S.

It is against the law in Colorado to record a private conversation in which at least one party has given consent to avoid an invasion of privacy. As a result, to lawfully record a conversation, at least one participant must consent to the surveillance cameras and video recordings.

There are, however, certain basic and common-sense exceptions, such as:

  • If two or more persons are conversing in a public place. People can’t anticipate privacy here; thus, recording audio without permission is legal.
  • Furthermore, you may not record public or private discussions to commit a crime.

What are the workplace surveillance laws in Colorado?

In Colorado, employers can legally use video surveillance in the workplace for business purposes. Video recording laws in Colorado stipulate that you cannot record people without their consent if there is a reasonable expectation of privacy, such as in locker rooms or a private place like a bathroom. 

Workplace security cameras 

Can an employer record audio at the workplace in Colorado?

Employers can institute policies prohibiting monitoring work conversations, no matter who consents. Violating these policies would not be a Colorado crime as long as at least one party to the conversation agrees to be recorded.

In Colorado, recording a private conversation in which you are not a participant is illegal. They may install cameras within allowed locations. However, since Colorado is a one-party consent state, at least one person in the private conversation must consent to the recording to be legal.

Conclusion 

Colorado is a One-Party Consent State, which means that at least one person or all persons involved in the recorded communication must consent.

In Colorado law, secretly recording an oral communication without the consent of at least one party is unlawful. Since it is illegal, video surveillance without audio is subject to far less legal scrutiny.

Surveillance cameras can be installed, but the location should be observed and not violate privacy laws. The law applies within Colorado. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the state’s video surveillance legislation and requirements before installing or upgrading security systems in Colorado. When it comes to access control in Denver, Colorado, ensuring compliance with local laws and regulations is equally important for safeguarding your property and maintaining security.

Hiring a professional security installer will ensure that your camera installation meets all state and federal regulations. Click this link if you’re looking for a security camera installer in Denver.

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