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Israel police begin testing AI-based automated traffic violation system

Police implement more AI-driven surveillance

Posted by

December 12, 2022


12:42 AM

Israel police begin testing AI-based automated traffic violation system

Israel police have begun testing a sophisticated AI-driven system which will use sensors to capture traffic violators and issue automatic fines. The sensors, which will be placed along Israeli roads, will scan for drivers who use their phone while driving (even at a red light), fail to give the right of way at a crosswalk, crossing a white line, holding a drink while driving, or other violations. 

The program, which is in the works for two years, is set to launch in 2023 according to Globes. 

"Currently 80% of enforcement tickets are the product of an interaction between a police officer and a civilian and only a small number are produced from cameras,” said Israel Police Planning Division Deputy Superintendent Yigal Haddad. “The aim is to change this ratio in the future and bring about a situation in which most of the tickets are produced completely digitally, freeing up the police to handle other routine police tasks." 

The wireless data captured by a combination of sensors and smart cameras will be sent to an advanced central processing computer for decoding, and a fine will be issued to the driver in minutes. The fine will be accompanied by video footage as evidence. 

Israel’s police force has recently taken to using AI-based surveillance. 

Frontline News reported last month that the police are refusing to disclose a secret algorithm being used to profile and detain passengers at the airport who have no criminal history and provide no cause for suspicion. Israeli courts have expressed concern about the artificial intelligence program, which raises several legal issues. 

According to a report by Calcalist, the program gathers private information about citizens from government ministries, including databases from the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Welfare, the Tax Authority and others. The algorithm then compiles the data, which may include socioeconomic status, marital status, relatives, etc. and matches them against a pre-determined criminal profile. It is unclear what significance the algorithm assigns to certain data.  

If there is a match, even if there is no criminal history, the passenger is detained at the airport by police before passing through border control. The reason for the detention is known only to the police officers, who then conduct a search of the passenger’s luggage and may also conduct an invasive body search.  

The existence of the program was revealed during a recent trial involving one such detainee, but the police refused to provide any details about the program to the court.  


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