The operating environment for law enforcement particularly in cities has grown more complex over the last decade. Security threats emanate from both traditional and non-traditional sources, emerging technologies give rise to new forms of crimes, and public demand for more agile responses make policing extremely challenging.
Leveraging new technologies is one key way in which law enforcement has responded to these challenges. In particular, the integration of smart technologies with regular closed-circuit televisions (CCTVs), otherwise known as Smart CCTVs, is envisaged to help law enforcement improve situational awareness as well as obtain additional sources of data for analysis or investigation. Yet, not much has been written about this emerging technology. As such, this exploratory study aims to: (i) examine how Smart CCTVs can be used to enhance law enforcement capabilities; (ii) identify issues and challenges associated with that use; and (iii) examine approaches to mitigate such challenges.
Upon examination, this study has found that Smart CCTVs can enhance law enforcement capabilities in four ways. They can: (i) act as a force multiplier; (ii) support police patrols; (iii); overcome human limitations; and (iv) support crisis and emergency management. As Smart CCTVs are powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), it is argued that they should not be regarded simply as tools for law enforcement, but rather as “partners”.
With that, the challenges associated with the use of Smart CCTV for law enforcement include: (i) cybersecurity issues; (ii) adaptive and resolute adversaries; (iii) operational surprises; and (iv) an overreliance on the technology.
As such, approaches to mitigate these challenges include: (i) a multi-pronged cybersecurity strategy that focuses on resilience rather than deterrence; (ii) empowering law enforcement officers with new skill sets; (iii) experimenting with plausible security scenarios to optimally integrate the use of Smart CCTVs into patrol operations, investigations and intelligence; (iv)ensuring that the adoption of technology is done in tandem with community partnership; and (v) deepening partnership with the private sector in terms of both regular CCTV and Smart CCTV surveillance.
Global / Policy Reports / Singapore and Homeland Security / Southeast Asia and ASEAN
Last updated on 15/08/2017