Nothing Changes if Nothing Changes

The first school shooting was at Columbine High School in 1999. The two shooters killed 10 students and 1 teacher, before killing themselves. At the time, America was shocked, united by a tragedy no one could have imagined.

Despite Columbine’s imprint on American society, today we are no longer shocked. School shootings have become the norm. In fact, gun violence affects our lives everywhere, at movies, stores, banks, concerts, parades, and places of worship. We are unable to stop the killing.

Artificial Intelligence, Predictive Analytics & Deep Learning

Traditional security practices rely on people. Security professionals are hired, sometimes they’re armed, other times not. Some walk the facility on a schedule, others sit in an office staring at surveillance feeds.

Schedules can be monitored and bad actors use a routine to their advantage. It’s a fact that watching surveillance video for more than 22 minutes results in a lack of focus and concentration. Once the watcher passes that mark, over 95% of activity on the screens are missed.

Security practices must evolve. This is not 1999.

Al Gun Detection Systems

AI Security

An AI weapon detection system can identify a hidden handgun or openly carried long guns. With cameras placed correctly, these systems will ID a shooter before they enter the building.  The systems are perfect for schools, critical infrastructure, and federal buildings. No matter the state laws, no guns are allowed on these premises.

Once the system identifies a weapon, it sends an automatic alert. Within seconds, law enforcement and designated school officials are aware of a possible shooter on the property. The alert can be programmed for any number of recipients: SROs, 911 operators, school administrators, law enforcement, EMTs, or local hospitals. The message includes a specific tone to alert the user.

Lockdown is immediate. Police are en route within minutes. There’s no middleman – it’s all electronic – freeing up the SROs or security professionals in the building.  First responders arrive on-site faster than is possible without an early detection system.

These systems are not to be confused with stationary weapon detection gates that look like the metal detectors at the airport or courthouse. These systems are placed inside the building which means a concealed weapon would be accessible in a line.  The value of the automated AI gun detection system is that it can catch the shooter outdoors.

Predictive Analytics

surveillance Cameras
Predictive analytics is next-generation situational awareness. These systems rely on machine learning to be proactive, identifying changes in behavior that could be suspicious. 

Video analytic technology helps security systems learn what’s normal and what’s not to identify unusual and potentially harmful behavior that a security officer may miss. Video analytics are perfect for setting up “virtual fences” that detect potential intruders even beyond the perimeter line. As the system learns, it can identify people who shouldn’t be where they are are, or are with an unfamiliar group.

Walking gait analysis can be used to identify and track an intruder as they move around the building. Automatic license plate recognition (ALPR) is a form of preventative analysis to track suspect vehicles and to look for unusual behavior, which could warn of potential danger.

Deep Learning

AI Machine Learning
AI’s ability to “learn” is one of its greatest assets. Machine learning is an AI attritube that teaches computers to learn from their own experience using computational methods to absorb information directly from analyzing data. Predictive analytics is the result of machine learning.

Deep learning is the next step. It mimics the neural networks of the human brain t to process and retain information.  Self-driving cars are an example of data-driven deep learning.

In terms of security, deep learning becomes a proactive monitoring tool. Over 44% of mass shooters communicate their intent online.  They engage on social media platforms and in private groups. The varied posts, locations and users present a challenge for recognizing the impact.

Deep learning is capable of connecting the dots. When applied to social media, deep learning can be combined with a security system to predict details of who, what, when, and where of a potential shooting incident. The system functions with limited human involvement, providing reports or readouts related to alleged criminal intent.

Preventive Tools

Gun violence
There are other advances that are less technical but can be bundled with technology.  One of the most recent innovations is the pop-up bullet-proof safe room, currently being used in Alabama.

Next is the use of Kevlar curtains on interior windows. The curtains, sold by Armor Outfitters in Texas, run $125 a pair.  They can block multiple rounds from a handgun or an automatic weapon. 

Door and window coverings that are fast and easy to execute are also available. Any tool that blocks the sight line of a shooter is helpful once they’re inside.

In Closing

The goal is to prevent loss of life.  AI technologies for security increase the probability of meeting that goal. They reduce response time, proactively identify possible crimes in progress, and can monitor social media. 

The only potential drawback is connectivity. For rural schools, hospitals or places of worship, the systems may not be as effective. As broadband becomes more universally accessible, that problem will be solved.

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