Big Brother-style facial recognition system publicly shames jaywalkers in China by beaming their image on a giant screen before sending them a fine via text message

  • Police in Shenzhen City, south-east China, are upgrading their existing systems
  • Images of jaywalkers are already beamed onto large LED screens in the city
  • Officials are consulting with mobile carriers and social media firms over the plan
  • The city hopes to roll out the extra deterrent to the region's 12 million people

Jaywalkers in one Chinese city will soon receive an instant notification and a fine as soon as they violate the rules, thanks to a new Big Brother-style scheme.

Officials are looking to upgrade an existing system that uses artificial intelligence and facial recognition technology to name and shame offenders. 

Images of pedestrians crossing the road against red traffic lights are already beamed onto large LED screens.

Now, the government is consulting with mobile carriers and social media firms to add the extra deterrent for the region's 12 million people. 

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Jaywalkers in one Chinese city will soon receive an instant notification as soon as they violate the rules, thanks to a new spy scheme. Officials are looking to upgrade an existing system that uses artificial intelligence and facial recognition technology to name and shame offenders

Jaywalkers in one Chinese city will soon receive an instant notification as soon as they violate the rules, thanks to a new spy scheme. Officials are looking to upgrade an existing system that uses artificial intelligence and facial recognition technology to name and shame offenders

Traffic police in Shenzhen City, south-east China, have asked Intellifusion - the firm behind the existing scheme - to adopt the new measures.

The firm's cameras are equipped with high resolution seven million pixel sensors, which capture photos of pedestrians crossing the road against traffic lights. 

Its facial recognition technology then identifies the offender from a database.

Individuals caught out suffer the indignity of having their photo, family name and part of their government identification number displayed on the screens.

In the ten months from launch to February of this year, the system has caught 13,930 offences on camera at one busy intersection. 

In March, police launched a webpage which displays photos, names and partial ID numbers of jaywalkers.

Local mobile providers and social media firms WeChat and Sina Weibo are reported to be involved in the next stage of the project.

Wang Jun, the company’s director of marketing solutions, told the South China Morning Post: 'Jaywalking has always been an issue in China and can hardly be resolved just by imposing fines or taking photos of the offenders. 

'But a combination of technology and psychology … can greatly reduce instances of jaywalking and will prevent repeat offences.'

News first emerged that Shenzhen had installed facial-recognition systems, dubbed 'robocops', in April 2017.

In the ten months from launch to February of this year, the system has caught 13,930 offences on camera at one busy intersection. In March, police also launched a webpage which displays photos, names and partial ID numbers of jaywalkers

In the ten months from launch to February of this year, the system has caught 13,930 offences on camera at one busy intersection. In March, police also launched a webpage which displays photos, names and partial ID numbers of jaywalkers

Traffic police in Shenzhen City, south-east China, have asked Intellifusion - the firm behind the existing scheme - to adopt the new measures. Local mobile providers and social media firms WeChat and Sina Weibo are reported to be involved in the next stage of the project

Traffic police in Shenzhen City, south-east China, have asked Intellifusion - the firm behind the existing scheme - to adopt the new measures. Local mobile providers and social media firms WeChat and Sina Weibo are reported to be involved in the next stage of the project

HOW DOES FACIAL RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGY WORK?

Facial recognition is increasingly used as way to access your money and your devices.

When it comes to policing, it could soon mean the difference between freedom and imprisonment.

Faces can be scanned at a distance, generating a code as unique as your fingerprints. 

This is created by measuring the distance between various points, like the width of a person's nose, distance between the eyes and length of the jawline.

Facial recognition systems check more than 80 points of comparison, known as 'nodal points', combining them to build a person's faceprint.

These faceprints can then be used to search through a database, matching a suspect to known offenders.

Facial recognition is increasingly used as way to access your money and your devices. When it comes to policing, it could soon mean the difference between freedom and imprisonment (stock)

Facial recognition is increasingly used as way to access your money and your devices. When it comes to policing, it could soon mean the difference between freedom and imprisonment (stock)

Facial scanning systems used on personal electronic devices function slightly differently, and vary from gadget to gadget.

The iPhone X, for example, uses Face ID via a 7MP front-facing camera on the handset which has multiple components.

One of these is a Dot Projector that projects more than 30,000 invisible dots onto your face to map its structure.

The dot map is then read by an infrared camera and the structure of your face is relayed to the A11 Bionic chip in the iPhone X, where it is turned into a mathematical model.

The A11 chip then compares your facial structure to the facial scan stored in the iPhone X during the setup process.  

Security cameras use artificial intelligence powered systems that can scan for faces, re-orient, skew and stretch them, before converting them to black-and-white to make facial features easier for computer algorithms to recognise.

Error rates with facial recognition can be as low as 0.8 per cent. While this sounds low, in the real world that means eight in every 1,000 scans could falsely identify an innocent party..

One such case, reported in The Intercept, details how Steven Talley was falsely matched to security footage of a bank robber.

According to the People's Daily Online, the technology was set up at a crossroad near Peking University Shenzhen Hospital on April 15, 2017, as part of a trial run.

The cameras operate 24 hours. 

A display screen was also installed at the side of the road and at the pedestrian island.

Chief officer Li Qiang at Shenzhen Traffic Police Technology Department told reporters that the technology mainly relies on the camera to detect a pedestrian crossing during the red light.

News first emerged that Shenzhen had installed facial-recognition systems, dubbed 'robocops', in April 2017 

News first emerged that Shenzhen had installed facial-recognition systems, dubbed 'robocops', in April 2017 

According to the People's Daily Online , the technology was set up at a crossroad near Peking University Shenzhen Hospital on April 15, 2017, as part of a trial run 

According to the People's Daily Online , the technology was set up at a crossroad near Peking University Shenzhen Hospital on April 15, 2017, as part of a trial run 

Shenzhen traffic police hope to roll out the technology to the whole city, promoting road safety to the region's 12 million people

Shenzhen traffic police hope to roll out the technology to the whole city, promoting road safety to the region's 12 million people

Cameras capture an offender's face and sends it to display screens, as well as the police bureau, where using face-recognition technology is used to identify the person.

The monitor display operates in real-time, meaning that head-shots of any offenders will upload instantly and run on a loop.

The system also records the number of times a person has run a red light.

The new facial recognition technology has brought an effect of public shaming. However, officer Li said it serves as a function of giving out a warning, sourcing evidence and promoting road safety.

Shenzhen traffic police department released a press release on March 16 showing a record of 123,200 cases of jaywalkers throughout 2016.

Officials are hoping to roll out the technology to the whole of Shenzhen city in the near future to help reduce the figures.

Cameras capture an offender's face and sends it to display screens, as well as the police bureau, where using face-recognition technology is used to identify the person. Cameras 24-hour operatin will capture any jaywalkers' image and display on the monitor

Cameras operating 24-hours will capture an offender's face and sends it to display screens, as well as the police bureau, where using face-recognition technology is used to identify the person

Any jaywalkers captured by the camera will display on a loop, showing the number of times crossing road illegally

Any jaywalkers captured by the camera will display on a loop, showing the number of times crossing road illegally

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