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AI Is Supercharging the Capabilities of Security Cameras




When you hear about security today, it’s often about cybersecurity — especially when AI’s involved. Still, the need for physical protection hasn’t gone away, and AI can improve this side of safety, too. AI security cameras are revolutionizing surveillance for both consumers and businesses.

Video doorbells and other smart cameras are some of the most popular smart home devices. The same underlying technology can benefit commercial security systems, too. Here are five ways AI surveillance is changing the game in both areas.

1. Immediate Responses

One of the biggest advantages of AI security cameras is that they trigger immediate alarms. Conventional cameras either require constant monitoring or only help you go back and identify a suspect after the fact. AI is more efficient.

Machine vision can process information faster than human brains and often more accurately. In a security context, that means smart cameras can recognize an intruder and trigger the appropriate response in real-time. As a result, businesses and homeowners can stop break-ins before any major damage occurs.

AI-powered cameras can also connect to multiple systems for a wider range of immediate responses. At their most basic, they can turn on lights to scare off intruders. Others can automatically contact the police, raise audible alarms or activate smart locks to keep the criminal in one place.

2. Object and Anomaly Detection

AI surveillance cameras can also use machine vision to identify specific objects. Some school systems already use these systems to detect weapons without requiring invasive searches or metal detectors. The technology can identify guns and alert authorities in three to five seconds, potentially saving lives.

Some advanced AI systems can even detect unusual behavior in people. Machine vision models can analyze security camera footage in real-time to identify suspicious actions that may suggest shoplifting. Alternatively, they can detect violent behavior like fighting or vandalism, immediately contacting authorities to respond before anything gets out of control.

This advanced detection is particularly useful for places like airports or stadiums. While crowds in these areas may be too large for human security teams to monitor effectively, AI cameras can fill the gaps.

3. Fewer False Positives

Simpler, motion detection-based cameras can detect intrusions and similar events, but they generate a lot of false alarms. AI security cameras are more reliable, which improves both comfort and safety.

Burglars come through the front door more than any other location, but so do plenty of innocent parties. Motion detectors may also trigger alarms when animals pass by. These false positives can disrupt your day — especially when they go off at night — and cause alert fatigue, where you pay less attention to real threats because you’re tired of false alarms.

AI can distinguish between animals and humans, reducing false alarms. Some can even use facial recognition or learn different residents’ schedules to avoid triggering an alarm when an authorized user enters.

4. Reducing Security Staffing Challenges

Another important benefit of AI surveillance is that it doesn’t require much manual intervention. Machine vision can analyze footage instead of a security guard at a desk, and AI cameras can contact authorities or set off alarms automatically.

This automation is helpful for consumers because they can get all the benefits of around-the-clock monitoring without an expensive human service. Businesses benefit from it because 50% of security teams have human resources challenges, making it difficult to retain enough employees for manual monitoring. The workers they do have can focus on more engaging work, while AI does the boring job of watching live video feeds.

Because continuous monitoring is monotonous, it’s easy for humans to get bored or distracted while doing it. Consequently, manual video monitoring is more likely to miss something, but AI delivers the same accuracy every time.

5. Faster Footage Review

Sometimes, a situation requires further investigation after it happens. AI security cameras help in these situations by making the review process easier and less time-consuming.

Most security systems, especially in large businesses, run around the clock. That’s great for security, but it leaves a lot of footage to rifle through when looking for a specific incident to investigate. AI systems can recognize and highlight moments of interest automatically, so you don’t have to spend as long looking for the right moment in a recording.

Some AI security systems even let users look through footage like a Google search. They can bring up relevant snippets within a few seconds of typing something like a description of what you’re looking for. This streamlined review leads to more effective investigations and less wasted time.

AI Surveillance Is the Next Big Thing in Security Cameras

People still have plenty of valid concerns about AI surveillance, but these benefits are hard to ignore. In many situations, AI-powered cameras make protecting your home or business easier and more effective.

Conventional camera technology, even with motion detection, can’t compete with AI. As a result, machine learning cameras will likely all but replace traditional cameras before long. The security industry won’t be the same, and that’s for the better.

Zac Amos is a tech writer who focuses on artificial intelligence. He is also the Features Editor at ReHack, where you can read more of his work.