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- Convergence: The Next Horizon in Security
- Eyes for Security
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Internet Eyes is a U.K. startup designed to crowdsource digital surveillance. People pay a small fee to become a "Viewer." Once they do, they can log onto the site and view live anonymous feeds from surveillance cameras at retail stores. If they notice someone shoplifting, they can alert the store owner. Viewers get rated on their ability to differentiate real shoplifting from false alarms, can win 1000 pounds if they detect the most shoplifting in some time interval, and otherwise get paid a wage that most likely won't cover their initial fee.
This isn't the first time groups have tried to crowdsource surveillance camera monitoring. Texas's Virtual Border Patrol tried the same thing:
deputizing the general public to monitor the Texas-Mexico border. It ran out of money last year, and was widely criticized as a joke.
This system suffered the same problems as Internet Eyes — not enough incentive to do a good job, boredom because crime is the rare exception
— as well as the fact that false alarms were very expensive to deal with.