Authorities in the South Korean city of Bucheon will start monitoring people who have tested positive from January using nearly 11,000 security cameras, facial recognition technology and artificial intelligence. Reuters news agency reported that the system monitors the movements of people who have tested positive, and monitors whether they are in contact with others and whether they are wearing masks.
According to authorities in Bucheon, near Seoul, the system should ease source and contact investigations into the city. This often operates 24 hours a day. “Sometimes it takes hours to analyze camera images,” said the mayor. “Face recognition offers analysis instantly.” The system uses cameras that are or will be installed throughout the city.
The project has been criticized by human rights lawyers and several parliamentarians. They fear that the data will also be used for other purposes. ‘Government plan to Big brother “It is completely wrong to follow people through surveillance cameras and use taxpayers’ money for this,” said a member of parliament from the Conservative People’s Party, the main opposition party.
According to the city of Bucheon, the fears are unfounded, because people who have not tested positive cannot be identified. South Korea’s science and information technology minister said there are currently no plans to use the system anywhere else in South Korea. The state is already following up on people who have tested positive, including by monitoring bank details and the location of cell phones.
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