The EU has casually announced it is planning a gargantuan surveillance system that will mine data from the web, p2p networks, personal computers and even CCTV, in an attempt to recognise patterns of”abnormal behaviour”. It’s website describes the project (ironically in language that would be familiar to an evil supercomputer) as “Intelligent information system supporting observation, searching and detection for security of citizens in urban environment.
Its stated goals are:
- to develop a platform for: the registration and exchange of operational data, acquisition of multimedia content, intelligent processing of all information and automatic detection of threats and recognition of abnormal behaviour or violence,
- to develop the prototype of an integrated, network-centric system supporting the operational activities of police officers, providing techniques and tools for observation of various mobile objects,
- to develop a new type of search engine combining direct search of images and video based on watermarked contents, and the storage of metadata in the form of digital watermarks,
But as with all grandiose plans there is should be a healthy dose of skepticism as to whether the pan European project will work in reality, or if it will suffer from the same fate as other government IT projects (i.e Epic Fail).