Image by Manfred Antranias Zimmer from Pixabay

Some cities and communities may be freed from stay-at home orders in the coming weeks, but with the COVID-19 pandemic still in full swing, companies are looking to AI to help enforce social distancing measures and avoid getting shut back down. One of the measures companies are considering is to equip their security cameras with AI technology that can track and identify workers who violate social distancing rules. Likewise, some companies plan to extend surveillance function to identify those who don’t wear masks and bar entrance for people with high temperatures.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

“The last thing we want is for the governor to shut all our projects down because no one is behaving. It’s another set of eyes on the site,” Pepper Construction vice president Jen Suerth said. She added that the system’s accuracy is high and is less prone to mistakes. Other companies taking the same route feel that using an AI system can help prevent instances of people protesting and clashing with guards.

Some concerned privacy experts, on the other hand, feel that there may be some privacy concerns to be address, especially if companies retain the system even after the pandemic ends. According to Stanford Law School privacy expert Al Gidari, the issue lies in whether the video that is taken simply to identify social distancing violators will also be used to identify shoplifters at a later time. But regardless of potential issues that AI or human enforcement may bring, experts agree that it will be new territory once the quarantine is loosened or lifted.


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