Japanese CCTV is AI-powered And Able To Catch Shoplifters In The Act

Credit: Earth Eyes


Japanese tech company Earth Eyes has created a smart security camera called AI Guardman, which catches thieves in the act.

The camera uses open-source technology and it is able to read cues from multiple persons in a social environment at the same time. The researchers at the Carnegie Mellon University who developed it have open sourced the technology last year on GitHub.

The AI Guardman identifies common body language cues shoplifters usually show, such as searching for blind spots or generally looking around in all directions. If the camera detects suspicious activity, it alerts the store personnel not only with a message but also with an image and the location of the suspect.


Though the AI still has some errors that need to be adjusted, such as not always pinpointing the ‘suspicious behavior’ just right – confusing clerks restocking shelves as shoplifters for example – the results have been more than promising.

The preliminary tests for the technology have shown a drop in shoplifting losses (from $32,000 to $18,000) and it has been tested in major retailers such as Xebio, Bic Camera, and Kirindo.

Earth Eyes hopes to introduce the AI Guardsman to 10,000 stores in the next three years, with a promise to not only target large businesses but smaller shops as well.

Soon enough we’ll have to wonder not if someone is watching us since there definitely will be some watching happening – but what is watching us.

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