A story in today’s Wall Street Journal outlines an ambitious surveillance project in the city of Chongqing. The ‘Peaceful Chongqing’ project is planned to span a 400-square-mile area with 500,000 cameras to keep track of traffic and crime among the city’s 12 million inhabitants. The companies participating and interested in the project are Cisco, Intergraph and Hewlett-Packard.
This surveillance system is at an unprecedented scale with goals of directly accessing camera controls remotely and passing on real-time video feeds to various police precincts and other organizations. The scale and scope dwarfs the systems that are in place in North America, and would be world-leading in terms of its scale and technical capability.
The project appears to be going forward despite concerns of human rights groups, and restrictions on crime-control technology export to China as a result of the Tiananmen Square crackdown.