Friday, May 30, 2008

EUROPEAN SPY SYSTEM WOULD KEEP CAMERA ON PASSENGERS ALL FLIGHT

NEW SCIENTIST A prototype European system uses multiple cameras and "Big Brother" software to try and automatically detect terrorists or other dangers caused by passengers. The European Union's Security of Aircraft in the Future European Environment project uses a camera in every passenger's seat, with six wide-angle cameras to survey the aisles. Software then analyses the footage to detect developing terrorist activity or "air-rage" incidents, by tracking passengers' facial expressions.

The system performed well in tests this January that simulated terrorist and unruly passenger behavior scenarios in a fake Airbus A380 fuselage, say the researchers that built it. . .

"It looks for running in the cabin, standing near the cockpit for long periods of time, and other predetermined indicators that suggest a developing threat," says James Ferryman of the University of Reading, UK, one of the system's developers.

Other behaviors could include a person nervously touching their face, or sweating excessively. One such behavior won't trigger the system to alert the crew, only certain combinations of them.

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