Experts Raise Concern Over Growing Prevalence Of Thermal Cameras

in #stem4 months ago


Around the world there are a growing number of businesses that might be looking into using thermal cameras to try and track temperatures of guests that are coming in. The cameras can be used to try and assess any potential sickness issues, but experts say there is pause for concern.

From the work environment to restaurant businesses and other potential areas, like hotels and airports etc, we could see the use of this technology start to grow. The reason behind it? Keeping people safe.

The recent COVID-19 situation has helped to fuel interest for this thermal-imaging technology and around the world it is already being tested.

Concerns Over Effectiveness and Privacy Risks

Technology experts are raising concerns about the privacy issues related to the growing prevalence of this technology, as well as questions about the efficiency of the technology in general.

The cameras are able to scan people from a distance and assess their temperatures using a high-resolution thermal camera that can read skin temperature. Some people might have already been exposed to seeing this technology when entering certain hospitals around the world, as it has quickly become big business in recent months.

Private airports in the United States are already using them, and others are likely soon to follow.

Senior policy analyst with the ACLU, J. Stanley, says we should be questioning if this is the future we want to rush forward to embrace.

"Every citizen should be asking, "Is that sacrifice I’m making, is this something that’s actually something that’s going to be effective or is this public health security theater?" - Stanley

How transparent are companies and government officials going to be about how they are using this data? Who might they be sharing it with, what are they collecting exactly, and how long might they be storing that data for etc.

People aren't going to want their physiological signs to be taken or assessed in this manner without their permission or their knowledge, such as drones flying around in the sky and taking their temperatures. Privacy should not be sacrificed in the name of keeping people safer, especially when it isn't certain how effective those methods or that technology might even be.

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Good point! How soon before they add thermal imagery to regular surveillance/security cameras?