Glasgow has been urged to invite the public to turn the tables on its CCTV operatives.

June 20th has been selected as Surveillance Camera Day and councils are being urged to throw their doors open so people can see how they operate at first hand.

The call comes as Community Safety Glasgow, part of Glasgow City Council, is facing scrutiny over a £1.2m ‘facial recognition’ system which has been installed on 70 CCTV cameras across the city.

The awareness-raising day is an initiative by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner (SCC) and the Centre for Research into Information, Surveillance and Privacy (CRISP).

The Commissioner Tony Porter’s role is governed by the Home Office but he has no remit in Scotland. However human rights lawyer John Scott QC said it would make sense for Glasgow to take part in Surveillance Camera Day.

READ MORE: Big Brother-style facial recognition cameras installed on Glasgow CCTV

“I think it would be a good idea for Community Safety Glasgow to let people see what this can do, it might offer a degree of reassurance.

“One of the things this software is used for is identifying or locating missing people – someone with dementia for instance, as well as recording and tracking people suspected of involvement in crime. So there are elements people would be delighted to hear about as well as other uses where people might feel they are not sure we should have that level of surveillance without more discussion,” he said.

Mr Porter said the intention of his initiative was to get the public thinking about the use of CCTV and generate debate. He added: “Of particular importance, is the pressing need for a nationwide conversation about how camera technology is evolving, especially around automatic face recognition and artificial intelligence and how surveillance cameras are actually used in practice, why they’re used and who is using them.”

He urged all councils to be more open about such technologies. “This conversation is important, because we are all captured by the gaze of the camera lens and because surveillance camera systems are meant to be delivered in the public interest,” he said.

READ MORE: New £10bn Glasgow Metro plan with trams and reopened train routes unveiled for city

In a report from the SCC on facial recognition, he also said such technologies had benefits but also “significant capabilities to intrude upon the right to privacy, the freedom of assembly and association, the freedom of expression and other fundamental freedoms.”

Legislation to establish a new Scottish Biometrics Commissioner, whose remit would include Police use of facial recognition technology is expected later this year, following a review chaired by Mr Scott which reported last November.

Read more of today's top Glasgow stories.