[Photo] Authorities place CCTV cameras at village archives

Kang Mi Jin  |  2017-06-16 14:31
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The North Korean authorities are reportedly installing security cameras (CCTV) at national archive centers that house official documents. The efforts appear to be aimed at preventing domestic information leaks. 
Even a small town in Komdok County, South Hamgyong Province has suddenly installed CCTV cameras at the village archives.
"Recently, the authorities have been installing CCTV cameras at public archives in villages as well as army facilities. A provincial executive who visited Pyongyang recently issued orders to install the surveillance equipment even in small villages," a source in South Hamgyong Province told Daily NK on June 13.
"Provincial executives are under a lot of pressure because the central authorities are criticizing the fact that documents are being stolen and sent abroad. In some villages where CCTV cameras are not available for purchase, local executives are ordering farmers to get the surveillance cameras at all costs, even giving them a months vacation to acquire them.
The moves come as more and more residents are getting arrested for trying to ferry lecture materials to China. 

"Recently, there was a case in which documents for a trading company were leaked abroad. The head of the company was expelled from the party and sent to a labor correction camp. Kim Jong Un seems to be greatly upset as it was revealed that some of the executives were implicated in the information leakage," the source noted.
"In regards to this, there are some executives who think that the regime seems very nervous, and the nationwide actions to strengthen the information security show that there have been massive data leakages. Residents are commenting cynically, saying, 'What is it that he (Kim Jong Un) is so desperate to conceal?'" an additional source in South Hamgyong Province said.
There are also many who question the feasibility of such measures. Some believe that cadres are eager to sell the documents in China for money and that the installation of CCTVs will not prevent such behavior, especially because its not difficult to find a way to avoid the cameras.
The leakage of internal documents overseas has become more common since Kim Jong Un took power, even though the regime has been adhering to a policy of stricter control over the people. Daily NK previously reported in April that a resident was arrested while trying to deliver lecture materials to a contact in China in the border region.

*Translated by Yejie Kim
*Edited by Lee Farrand

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