Dubai Police’s new cutting edge robot patrol car (Picture: Dubai Police/Cover Images)
The all-electric security patrol, showcased at the GITEX Global 2023 exhibition in Dubai, has been developed to enhance safety in residential neighbourhoods.
With a top speed of 4.3mph the new car isn’t quite KITT from Knight Rider, but boasts a number of other state-of-the-art innovations.
Crime-fighting features include a sophisticated camera system capable of capturing 360-degree views, with built in artificial intelligence (AI) capable of detecting and analysing ‘criminal behaviour’. No further indication has been given as to what types of criminal behaviour could be identified, or how the AI has been trained.
The camera also offers facial recognition, a controversial practice that is being increasingly deployed by law enforcement across the world despite significant privacy and civil liberty concerns.
On Thursday, the Metropolitan Police announced it is using CCTV stills to try to match shoplifters to existing mugshots – but could one day add passport photos to its central database.
The robot car is small in stature but can fly high using its drone sidekick (Picture: Dubai Police/Cover Images)
The Dubai ‘robocop’ can also record the licence plates of cars spotted on its rounds.
However, automatic number plate recognition is fairly old technology – think average speed limit zones in the UK which use similar technology. Much more 21st century is the addition of an autonomous drone partner, designed to offer surveillance in remote locations the car can’t reach itself.
The patrol vehicle, seemingly as yet unnamed, is also equipped with advanced communication systems that enable real-time connectivity with the Command and Control Centre at the Police General Operations Department.
Dubai already reports some of the lowest crime rates in the world, and has a number of strict laws unfamiliar to Brits.
It is illegal to drink or be under the influence of alcohol in public, while gay relationships or gender diversity can result in a prison sentence. Swearing and rude gestures are also outlawed.
Ironically, taking photos of people without their permission is also illegal.
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21st century policing is here.