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The World on CCTV Cameras

2012/02/18 | 433 views |  | Permalink | Source

Korea has a number of small and medium sized corporations that are making a steady but significant difference in the global market.

And to update us on the latest innovations of these smaller companies in Korea, we have reporter Lina Kwon joining us in the studio.
Hello Lina.

[Interview : Lina Kwon Reporter] Hello Ji-hae, Sean. It's great to be here in the studio.
Now before I reveal what company I visited this time, I have a question for you both. How would you feel if you knew that someone was watching you throughtout the day, from the moment you step out of your house I suppose that's not the most pleasant of thoughts. I wouldn't want someone to constantly look into my private life.

I think it all depends on the context. If that someone was trying to keep out an eye for me, I wouldn't mind it as much.

[Interview : ] Well whether you like it or not, it might be inevitable. All of us live in a world surrounded by closed-circuit TV cameras, or better known as CCTV cameras. And as the technology utilizing theses existing cameras evolve, a wide range of concerns are growing as well. Many people worry that these cameras will go beyond security purposes and violate personal space.
We took a closer look at this industry and a glimpse into what the future holds for us in the world with growing number of CCTV cameras.

Sean and Ji-hye! How would you feel if you knew that someone was watching you throughout the day, from the moment you stepped out your door to the moment you came home after work

According to a report, people living in Seoul are caught on CCTV cameras 83 times a day, or once every nine seconds.

[Interview : Lina Kwon, Reporter Arirang Today] "There are 2.8 million CCTV cameras installed all over Korea, some operated by public offices and some operated by private enterprises. It is virtually impossible to avoid being caught on tape wherever we go. How do Koreans feel about being constantly watched[Interview : ] "It helps maintain security".

[Interview : ] "Cameras are crucial for the safety of our children".

[Interview : ] "I guess what's good about having CCTV is that we can prevent crimes, especially for our kids. These days, there's a lot of crimes for kids, and it's very important to prevent crimes. So we definitely have to have CCTV".

[Interview : ] "It's true that it could become an invasion of privacy".

[Interview : ] "If the quality isn't very good, then the footage might not be of any help even if a crime is caught on tape".

[Interview : ] "Some people might feel uncomfortable around CCTV, so I guess that would be the bad side".

CCTV cameras are used mostly for public safety, to prevent crimes, to prepare for disasters, and to maintain building security.

However, the issue of privacy violations is an irresolvable one.

Companies in Korea are working to reduce those dangers.

[Interview : Jeon Beom-jong, Director Korea Digital CCTV Research Association] "Korea, China, and Taiwan are the only three countries that produce CCTV technology. Korea, in particular, popularized the use of Digital Video Recorder products all over the world. Korea represents 50% of the world market share, demonstrating that we are the world leader in terms of CCTV technology".

[Interview : Lina Kwon, Reporter Arirang Today] "We see CCTV cameras dotting the streets whenever we are out driving or walking along. Korea's CCTV technology is now the leader in the world market. We went to find out just how advanced this technology could be".

First established in 1989, this Korean company has spent two decades creating an integrated CCTV command center.

[Interview : Kim Dong-hwan, Division chief Mido Information & Technology] "Our company strives to stay ahead in the market demand for network technology, CCTV, system development, and video transmission technology. We continuously work to develop new products and solutions".

At the lab, everyone is busy developing new ways to link up independent CCTV systems.

[Interview : Lina Kwon, Reporter Arirang Today] "How does this system work"

[Interview : Kim Tae-woo, Senior researcher
Mido Information & Technology] "In the past, each administrative district had its own CCTV system to prevent environmental pollution, crime, and traffic violations. Having so many different systems became problematic, so we developed a system that would allow integrated access and control. We are developing technology that allows us to do more than simply watch and record. We want to create functions that would track the movements of specific people on camera or be able to identify the faces that we see".

The company's smartphone/tablet PC application allows for mobile control of CCTV cameras.

[Interview : ] "Hearing you talk about this technology makes me want to try using it myself. How can I do that[Interview : ] "You can download our application, called "Camviewer"."

[Interview : ] "Ah! Camviewer".

[Interview : ] "How do I use this application after I install it"

[Interview : ] "So this is what's happening in the lab right now[Interview : ] "Yes, we're watching the lab in real time".

[Interview : ] "That's amazing. If I have one of these installed at home, I could watch my puppy".

It seemed convenient that CCTV cameras at home could be monitored at all times on mobile phones.

Policies are evolving to keep pace with technology.

By 2015, the Korean government hopes to integrate control of about 100,000 CCTV cameras all across the country.

But there are several issues that must be resolved first.

[Interview : Jeon Beom-jong, Director Korea Digital CCTV Research Association] "While we continue to develop the technology for an integrated control center, local governments are reluctant to adopt it because they receive no financial support to hire people to run it. To solve that problem, we hope to develop smart CCTV technologies that could be run unmanned".

You mentioned that there are 2.8 million CCTV cameras installed in Korea right now. Is this number expected to increase any time soon.

[Interview : ] Yes. The number of CCTV cameras around the world increases 20 percent each year and this number is also expected to increase over the coming years. In Korea, specifically, the government hopes to install control centers in each of Korea's 230 local governments and to integrate control of about a hundred thousand CCTV cameras all by the year 2015.

I hear that the CCTVs are dubbed as "big brother" for its ability and responsibility to constantly look out after us. How does the company Mido hope to find a balance between security and privacy How do you limit usage so that people don't access it for personal purposes

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