China’s facial-recognition systems are becoming part of daily life
police at a railway station in the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou scan the crowd in search of wanted criminals using Google Glass-style eyewear with facial-recognition software.
screen passengers as part of the tightened security amid the upcoming Lunar New Year travel rush,
The adoption of the glasses represents a breakthrough in security as the police force shifts from being manpower intensive to technology-powered,” Xie Yukun, a railway police officer in Zhengzhou, said in an interview.
Since the deployment of police with smart glasses started at the Zhengzhou station earlier this month, as many as seven people suspected of crimes, ranging from human trafficking to hit-and-run incidents, had been apprehended.
In 2015, the Ministry of Public Security launched a project to build the world’s most powerful facial recognition database to identify any one of China’s more than 1.3 billion citizens within three seconds. The agency is developing that system with a security company based in Shanghai.
Alibaba, its affiliate Ant Financial and the Shanghai Shentong Metro Group, the operator of the Shanghai Metro, plan to install the Alibaba-developed “far-field” voice recognition technology in ticket machines in all stations, as well as a facial recognition system at the entrance of stations to verify the identities of commuters.