License plate recognition systems to be installed in mall parking lots across Turkey
ISTANBULA license plate recognition system will be installed in the parking lots of all malls across Turkey as a part of security precautions, state-run Anadolu Agency has reported.
According to the new Customs and Trade Ministry regulation published in the Official Gazette on Dec. 29, license plate recognition systems will be installed at the entrances and exits of mall parking lots and will provide license plate information to law enforcement if required. If the Interior Ministry considers it necessary, under-vehicle monitoring systems will also be installed in parking lots.
Technical specifications of the systems and aspects of data sharing will be determined by the Interior Ministry.
Undercover police officers had previously started to address shortcomings in security at Turkish shopping malls, as authorities tighten up security in various areas in the face of mounting terrorist attacks in the country.
Uğur Berk, the manager of luxurious Istanbul shopping mall İstinye Park, said they were cooperating with the police department on possible security shortcomings at the facility, adding that they were receiving reports from undercover police officers at the site.
“Last year there were debates about shopping malls, with people arguing that security measures should be lowered. In shopping malls, security is maintained by private security firms but undercover police officers can also enter liker customers and detect security shortcomings,” said Berk.
Throughout 2016 Turkey was hit by major terror attacks that struck big cities like Istanbul and Ankara, mostly carried out as suicide bomb attacks. More than 100 people, including security personnel and civilians, were killed in the attacks over the course of the year.
Most of the attacks were claimed by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).