Cathay installs CCTV to enhance on board securityLocal | Cissy So and Lauren Lau 7 Aug 2019
Cathay Pacific Airways said it has been installing CCTV cameras in its aircraft cabins since the end of July to monitor passengers' activities for security reasons.
The airline said that one camera is located near the cockpit.
A Cathay spokesman told CNN Travel that the security cameras were installed to protect passengers and frontline staff, and added it was strictly due to security concerns.
The airline also said images are taken from security cameras installed around the plane, and not from those affixed to the backs of passengers' seats.
Cameras have also been set up in VIP zones around the airport terminal.
Cathay admitted to collecting images of passengers, as well as monitoring their in-flight entertainment systems.
The airline also gained information on how passengers spend time during flights from the footage.
"Our in-flight entertainment systems do not have any cameras, microphones or sensors to monitor passengers, nor have they in the past. All images are handled sensitively with strict access controls, and there are no CCTV cameras installed in the lavatories."
The data will be used to improve passengers' flight experience, and be shared with third-party partners for marketing purposes.
Jeremy Tam Man-ho, a lawmaker and pilot for Cathay, believes that the cameras will only be used to gather the data of passengers' entertainment systems, such as which movies they watch, the songs they listen to and whether they click on the promotions shown on their screens.
Tam added that installing CCTV cameras near the cockpit has been done in the past.
"The purpose of installing a camera near the cockpit is to let pilots see what is happening outside, and in order to prevent people from getting inside," Tam said.