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A new generation of computerized ‘Big Brother’ cameras are able to spot if you are a terrorist or a criminal – before you even commit a crime. The devices are installed in places like train stations or public buildings where they scan passers by to see if they are acting suspiciously.
Using a range of in-built parameters of what is ‘normal’ the cameras then send a text message to a human guard to issue an alert – or call them. Manufacturers BRS Labs said it has installed the cameras at tourist attractions, government buildings and military bases in the U.S.
But the Texas-based company has offices in London, Sao Paulo, and Barcelona – meaning they could be in dozens of places around the world.
In its latest project BRS Labs is to install its devices on the transport system in San Francisco, which includes buses, trams and subways.
The company says will put them in 12 stations with up to 22 cameras in each, bringing the total number to 288. The cameras will be able to track up to 150 people at a time in real time and will gradually build up a ‘memory’ of suspicious behaviour to work out what is suspicious.
BRS Labs said the cameras effective have ‘the capability to learn from what they observe’. Its advanced features also mean it can compensate for poor light or a shaky image, further reducing the need for human supervision.
Each camera has a series of virtual ‘trip wires’ and if any activated then an alert is sent out to a human supervisor.
The relevant clip of footage is then sent over the Internet to human employees, along with a text message informing them of more details.
Speaking to Fast Company, BRS Labs President John Frazzini said its technology involves 11 patents which deal with helping the machines to learn. He added that in the case of the San Francisco cameras, the footage will actually be turned into code before being analysed.
In the post 9/11 world, Western countries have increasingly looked to behaviour monitoring to stop themselves becoming the victims of a terrorist attack.
In the UK staff at airports have been trained in ‘behavioural detection’ to spot somebody acting suspiciously. It has since been discussed at the UN-backed International Civil Aviation Organisation in Switzerland and could be rolled out across Europe.
U.S. airports such as Boston’s Logan airport also have similar measures in place in addition to the usual metal detectors and pat-downs.
This summer the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Department will release harmless bacteria into its subway system to test biological weapons detectors. source – Daily Mail UK
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