Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 12:51PM
From Bob Roberts at WBBM:
Pickpockets and muggers beware -- soon, every turnstile at a CTA 'L' station will have airport-style face recognition cameras, and the transit agency is planning much more comprehensive cameras at all 144 of its 'L' stations. [...] CTA President Richard Rodriguez said the agency's goal is to fully outfit all 'L' stations, but said it is dependent on federal funding, and as a result chose the 29 Green and Red Line stations first.This type of public deployment of facial recognition technology is extremely difficult. So far, 3VR Security is the only organization to come close to providing adequate technology of this task as showcased in its deployment in South Korea.
Rodriguez said all of the cameras will be linked not just to the CTA Control Center but to the city's 911 call center and police, as well. At suburban CTA 'L' stations, CTA has established or intends to establish a similar link with local police agencies and Cook County Sheriff's Police.
CTA's board Wednesday approved a $4.3 million contract with Teleste Corp., of Georgetown, Tex., to install the cameras and related equipment. It is financing the high-resolution turnstile cameras, which will be capable of showing facial details, through a $17.9 million U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security grant.