Thousands of AI CCTV cameras to guard railway stations against candid shooting and other crimes

Kim Joo-heon Reporter() | Posted : June 8, 2022, 18:23 | Updated : June 8, 2022, 21:47

[Courtesy of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport]

SEOUL -- To stem candid shooting and other illegal activities, some 5,000 artificial intelligence-based closed-circuit television cameras will be installed at railway stations in South Korea by 2024. A smart video information analysis system will increase the safety and privacy of passengers in a faster and more efficient way than existing methods.
 
The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport aims to detect crimes using AI-based CCTVs and immediately notify railroad police. Blind spots will be significantly reduced by optimizing CCTV's locations and angle of view by virtually installing cameras on three-dimensional indoor maps.

CCTV analysis done manually by human workers takes up to 60 minutes. The ministry said that the AI solution takes six minutes and enables a rapid on-site response to crimes. "The AI solution is very efficient in time because it can identify criminals based on information including the description of criminals' appearance and gender," Kim Young-jae, a ministry spokesperson, told Aju Business Daily on June 8.

Ministry data showed that sex crimes such as illegal filming and molestation accounted for 37 percent of 10,837 crimes that took place between 2017 and 2021. "The establishment of AI CCTVs in subway stations will improve the safety of passengers through a faster and more efficient response system," Lim Jong-il, a ministry official, said in a statement on June 8.

Candid shooting, an act of taking photographs without consent in private and public places, has been an annoying social problem. Photographs taken in swimming pools, beaches, changing rooms and toilets have leaked despite a consistent crackdown. In 2020, South Korea was rattled by the shockingly horrible reality of an online sex crime when operators of a smartphone messenger app channel were arrested for filming and sharing some 2,000 illegally filmed sexual videos of ordinary people including minors. 

An AI CCTV solution has been used in other government agencies. "It's being used a lot by other organizations," Kim said, adding AI CCTVs installed on river bridges in Seoul play a crucial role in preventing suicide. "In some subway stations, the solution is used to find out socially disadvantaged people falling down or those who need help."
 
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