Surat police now have the help of a real-time facial recognition system. Installed by NEC Corporation, the system will use real-time matching with police databases to identify criminals captured on the city’s CCTV system.
A trial project has seen the system deployed in seven locations near the city’s railway station and its main bus terminal, but the broader system aims to take advantage of the 604 CCTV cameras dispersed throughout Surat. It’s being deployed along with a license plate recognition system as part of a broader project called Surat Safe City.
Officials expressed considerable optimism about the project. Surat police commissioner Rakesh Asthana expressed excitement about having secured the technology from a “top global company” involved in biometric security, while NEC India director Koichiro Koide suggested that the city is the first in India to deploy such technology (though such a system was deployed on an ad hoc basis to protect officials during US president Obama’s recent visit), and suggested that the system will work even on criminals who have undergone plastic surgery.
This kind of technology is becoming increasingly prominent around the world, but Surat is near the front of the crowd in adopting it. It’s probably no coincidence that such an approach is being taken by an Indian city; at the national level the country has been a global leader in adopting biometric technology, especially through its ambitious Aadhaar national ID project.
Source: The Times of India
July 21, 2015 – by Alex Perala