Future Surveillance Tech May Leverage Different Monitoring Systems

The most significant issue that impacts surveillance today is how invasive facial recognition tech is. In the recent political uprising in Hong Kong, the world saw how useful it could be for oppressive regimes, and how humans could adapt to such a situation. However, as invasive as facial recognition is, it may soon be replaced by something more insidious and invasive. Some of these include using lasers to pick up users’ heartbeats and even record the behavior of individuals as a means to track them.

Legislation Already Hampering Facial Recognition Implementation

Because of the invasive nature of the technology, many lawmakers have already set in motion bills that would limit its use across the general population. San Francisco, Oakland, and Somerville within the US have imposed severe restrictions on the use of the technology. Cardiff in the UK has had a similar situation but ended with the ruling that the use of technology by local police was legal. Public opinion of the tech is shallow, with many individuals against the widespread use of it in its most critical applications. To this end, monitoring and surveillance technology has had to become more creative.

Alternative Surveillance Tech

Police in China have started a trial of a system that monitors the movements and behaviors of individuals. The behavioral biometrics system claims to be able to recognize people from their body language and actions. Watrix, the company that developed the system, claims that it can achieve a 94% accurate reading on recognition of an individual solely using their gait as obtained by video cameras. They utilize an AI system to compare the individual’s walk to a pre-recorded version stored in their database.

Another emerging technology for surveillance comes in the form of heartbeat monitoring. The Pentagon mentioned that they now have access to a technology that allows them to identify an individual from up to 200m (650 ft.) away through smart application of lasers. Publicly known surveillance systems like facial recognition may be a thing of the past before we even know it.