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One of the main concerns of the wide use of video surveillance is the loss of individual privacy. Individuals who are not suspects need not be identified on camera recordings. Mechanisms that protect the identity while ensuring legitimate security needs are necessary. Selectively encrypting objects that reveal identity (e.g., faces or vehicle tags) is necessary to preserve individualspsila right to privacy. This paper presents a compression algorithm independent solution that provides privacy in video surveillance applications. The proposed approach is based on the use of permutation based encryption to hide identity revealing features. The permutation based encryption tolerates lossy compression and allows decryption at a later time. The use of permutation based encryption makes the proposed solution independent of the compression algorithms used. The paper presents the performance of the system when using H.264 video encoding.