Industry News

Facial recognition technology captures first suspect

Facial recognition technology, introduced by South Wales Police to identify hooligans and ticket touts, has been involved in the arrest of a suspect for the first time.

The arrest, which took place on Wednesday, was not linked to the Uefa Champions League final game at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium. Facial recognition cameras scanned fans as part of a police operation to target ticket touts.

The South Wales Police are the first in the UK to use the real-time cameras linked to facial recognition software to monitor people in and around the city centre.

While the technology is primarily used to identify terrorists and hooligans, it is also being used to monitor ticketing touts.

Police have received additional funding for a separate trial of software that enables them to cross reference CCTV images and other picture with their database of 500,000 custody images, according to the Wales Online news website.

A police spokeswoman said: “South Wales Police has made significant progress in the development of its technology in the past 18 months, and that work is only set to continue as we strive to ensure we arm our officers with the very best technology commercially available – providing the public benefit is both proven and justifiable.

“The technology will be tested in a variety of circumstances and location in the months to come, assisting in our assessment of the viability of the project moving forward”.

Chief superintendent Jon Edwards previously said: “The Uefa Champions League final in Cardiff gives us a unique opportunity to test and prove the concept of this technology in a live operational environment, which will hopefully prove the benefits and the application of such technology across policing.”

Image: WDNet Agency