AI Technology Enhances Surveillance Practices to Make Our World a Safer Place
The advancement in AI technologies is to surveillance cameras what prescription glasses are to the short-sighted: it opens up a whole new world of possibilities. AI surveillance technology protects commercial and residential sites, critical infrastructure, and public spaces from security breaches and it does so in real-time. The technology is also used for access control at large events.
Tragedies like the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, the continuing threat of bombings in public spaces and the need for countries to keep their citizens safe, is one reason for the proliferation of AI surveillance technology. According to a 2019 report by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, AI surveillance technology is fast being adopted by many countries. At least 75 out of 176 countries are using AI technologies for surveillance purposes. The applications include smart city platforms, facial recognition systems, and smart policing.
What Is the Role of AI in Surveillance?
AI is turning surveillance cameras into intelligent tools that understand what they see. AI incorporates technologies like Deep Learning (DL) and machine learning (ML) to analyze and learn from massive databases.
ML, DL, and AI are increasingly being applied in the physical security industry. ML is a component of AI. It involves the exposure of algorithms to huge volumes of data, the algorithms learning from that data and eventually making predictions.
However, there is another branch of ML, namely deep learning. Here the algorithms are based on neural networks and these systems don’t have to be programmed to learn, they learn by themselves
Advancements in deep learning have completely revolutionized video surveillance. Observations and predictions have become much more accurate and users note fewer false alarms and increased accuracy in identifying objects and incidents.
Powered with AI technology, surveillance cameras don’t just see something happening, they can predict that something is about to happen and warn a human responder of an imminent threat in real-time.
AI surveillance technology makes use of facial recognition technology, vehicle identification, perimeter protection solutions, thermal cameras, and business intelligence to identify security threats.
For example, surveillance cameras armed with AI can send alerts as soon as they spot an intruder, notice suspicious behavior, or observe an unknown vehicle entering the premises.
Because the alerts happen in real-time, the situation can be contained and the threat neutralized, preventing crime and saving lives.
In fact, the core benefit of AI surveillance technology is its ability to identify threats before they can develop into full-scale high-risk situations.
AI is crucial to data analytics for surveillance purposes. The myriad cameras around generate inestimable data volumes which simply can’t be analyzed without AI-powered video management software.
AI Helps to Detect COVID 19
A number of companies are using artificial intelligence-empowered technology to spot COVID 19 symptoms, track the spread of the virus and investigate possible treatments for the disease.
AI-powered thermal cameras are being used to identify those with COVID 19 and to record the spread of the disease. A thermal body temperature sensing camera that can scan for fevers in people has been developed. The camera leverages artificial intelligence thermal imaging to take accurate body temperatures. Early detection of elevated body temperature can help to identify the presence of a virus and prevent the spread of it.
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), also known as drones, are being deployed in China to survey public spaces in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID 19. The drones are used to spot people who are entering public spaces without a facial mask, or moving beyond a specified area or are exceeding the time limit on how long they may be outside.
Making Crowds Safer
Another use case for AI surveillance technology is the monitoring of crowds at airports, major events, schools, shopping malls, and other public places.
AI surveillance technology can be used to detect mass casualty threats like suicide bombs and firearms. Companies are working on a screening apparatus that will allow will prevent long lines and bottlenecks at places where large crowds gather the like sports arenas and stadiums.
These machines are already in the making. A screen that lets around 700 attendees through an entrance without anyone having to stop and empty a bag or show their ID has been developed. Through facial recognition technology, with the help of a pre-established database, the system can distinguish real visitors, fans, VIPs, and attendees from people on the database watch list. The system can also detect concealed weapons and suicide vests.
There is no doubt that AI surveillance technology is superior to human capabilities in keeping people safe. The world has simply become too populated and too complex to depend on security guards and CCTV operators for safety and not to leverage AI-empowered surveillance technology to prevent crime and whole scale tragedies.
However, recent promising developments in AI surveillance technology doesn’t mean that we are now safe wherever we go. The day when you can attend an FA Cup final with no worries for your safety is still way off as artificial intelligence is still a developing technology and the cost to obtain and employ it is still prohibitive for most enterprises.