China: facial recognition and state control | The Economist

China: facial recognition and state control | The Economist

Improving lives,… …increasing connectivity across the world. That’s the great promise
offered by data-driven technology. [Protests] But in China, it also promises
greater state control and abuse of power. [Protests] This is the next groundbreaking development
in data driven technology:… …facial recognition. And in China
you can already withdraw cash,… …check-in at airports,… …and pay for goods,
using just your face. The country is the world’s leader
in the use of this emerging technology. And China’s many
artificial intelligence startups… …are determined
to keep it that way in the future. Companies like YITU. We’re pioneering… …Artificial Intelligence research and innovation,… …in the hope of creating
a safer, faster, and healthier world. [Chinese] YITU is creating the building blocks
for a smart city of the future,… …where facial recognition
is part of everyday life. This could even extend to detecting
what people are thinking. Facial recognition:
they can read people’s emotions,… …and we are actually now working
on these innovative demonstrations and technology. But the Chinese government has plans
to use this new biometric technology… …to cement its authoritarian rule. The country has ambitious plans
to develop a vast national surveillance system,… …based on facial recognition. It’ll be used to monitor
its 1.4 billion citizens… …in unprecedented ways. With the capability of tracking everything,
from their emotions… to their sexuality. The primary means
will be a vast network of CCTV cameras. A 170 million are already in place,… …and an estimated 400 million new ones
will be installed over the next three years. The authorities insist this program
will allow them to improve security for citizens,… …and if you have nothing to hide,
you have nothing to fear. But not everyone is convinced. [Chinese] Hongshen Kwai is a former magazine editor. He was ousted by the government. He feels like he’s under constant surveillance. [Chinese] Already the authorities are using facial recognition
to name and shame citizens. Even for minor offenses,
like jaywalking. In Beijing,… …they’re using the technology
to prevent people… …stealing rolls of loo paper
from public toilets. And across China, police officers
are now trialing sunglasses and body cameras,… …loaded with facial and gesture
recognition technology. It’s helping them to identify
wanted suspects in real-time. What worries some people here… …is that, as the technology develops,
so too does the capacity for it to be abused. [Chinese] Some of those most at risk
in this hyper-surveillance future… …are the ethnic minorities in China. In Xinjiang province, the Chinese government
is wary of the separatist threat… …posed by the Muslim Uyghur population. According to local NGOs,… …an estimated 1 million Uyghurs… …are being detained indefinitely
in secretive internment camps,… …where some are being subject to abuse. It’s been called the largest mass incarceration
of a minority population in the world today. The authorities are using facial recognition cameras
to scan people’s faces before they enter markets. The system alerts authorities if targeted individuals stray 300 meters beyond their home. In the future, the government plans
to aggregate even more data,… …and build a predictive policing programme… …that imposes even tighter controls here. Without checks and balances,… …China will keep finding new ways
to violate the human rights of its citizens. What’s already happening in Xinjiang
is a warning the rest of the world must heed.

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100 Replies to “China: facial recognition and state control | The Economist”

  1. western always play dirty work in religion especially xinjiang china. you had no idea how long that the hangs and xinjiang people relationship since over few thousand years old not this era so stay out of great china

  2. talk about privacy ? if u dont want invasion of privacy ,smash ur phone and move to middle of nowhere , everywhere is the same , all govornment do the same f up shit to its citizens.idk mabye someday people will sudden wake the hell up and fight ,because now yall like signing all the privacy trems for convenience

  3. China doesc thing to protect majority of public safety. The American isto project safety of terrorist minority

  4. If the state choose to they can make anything they want illegal, forcing citizens conform to anything; things like what clothes you wear, your purchase choices and even what you eat. This technology will jeopardise individualism and severely limit freedom of choice. Pushing people too far will lead to rebellion, anarchy and ultimately breakdown of society. So crack on China, roll on World War III. POWER TO THE PEOPLE!

  5. Wow this is like Minority Report but for real lol. China has gone full on orwellian here. Sad we have gotten to this pathetic state.

    But we are also not far behind China in this respect. Good news is there still resistance to it as is the case in San Francisco.

    Which is trying to ban facial recognition. I hope they are successful as despise companies that use this technology for their own personal gain.


    This brings nothing of use to the general population but more control. China is an extreme case of course.

    But don't think it can't happen here as there is already a socialist movement. Which plays right into this whole way of thinking.

    This reminds me of World War II Germany. Where the Statsi Brigade where sent out to weed out German Jewish sympathizers.


    Citizens were asked to spy on other citizens and report to the Stasi. The Chinese government here is basically taking this to the next level.

    A mentality where points are added or subtracted. Based on how good Chinese nationalist you are or not. Get enough strike points against you.

    Your publicly shamed for all to see lol. Well that's certainly one way of controlling the population. Where is Neo when you need him lol. :/

  6. This is exactly why I want to live off grid. Nothing good will come in the future of living in high density population centers.

  7. Kyaaaaarrrr! Creepy commies. "Vote" w/ your fashion: WEAR a HAT, wear sunglasses, and carry an umbrella. Send a strong, clear message: WE do NOT CONSENT.

  8. Isis Terorist can not come at china because there is many china use facial recognition will spy on you isis terrorist too easy caught to be death. Because china already hate isis terorist during 1989 – 2016.. china, american and european will complete facial recognition in future

  9. Like, why would you be concerned if you are a good person? At least it's better than woken up at 3 am by some emergency message asking for citizens' help to find some kidnapper's car with a fking plate number. It's like there's no security camera in Canada

  10. This is creepy and human Right violating. Just imagine You are staying naked spiritually and physically anywhere you go through those CCTVs.

  11. Alright, I`ve got one for you. As you probably know, China`s very big on surveillance. Well, this Chinese criminal who was wanted went to watch football, and there were around 60,000 people in the stadium. Anyway, the cameras picked him out using facial recognition, and the police were able to come along and apprehend him. When the British law enforcement agencies heard about this they though, "Wow! That`s impressive – we`ll have some of that." So anyway, at great expense Britain goes ahead and purchases and installs this state of the art equipment. Unfortunately it didn`t work over there – all English people look the same.

  12. The wall of shame hahah I picture has been in one, we were crossing the road but the light traffic changed to red in the middle of our crossing, and We’re there on the wall of shame

  13. why are people shouting English to protest or is it happening in another country? Or maybe they are just puppet of foreign media? Edit: and also holding an American flag. oops

  14. I can't even make a comment. I don't want any slope heads knocking at my door (and I live in Australia).

  15. Nazis in china too. I don't think Germany lost WWII. It was a deception, after all the US did take in the German Nazi Scientists and they worked for the US Government. Isn't that correct America? This up surd predictive software will be coming to each state in America immediately. America be aware of tyranny.

  16. But thats what is happening round the world. Not just China, if you have a touch phone, you are surveilled 24/7 and can do virtually everything with your phone

  17. Actually they doing great they tracking people for their own good and safety and security the country with 1:3 billion people can pay with you face means how develop their country is amazing all countries must follow this

  18. This is so scary, its gonna make ppl not even wanna step foot in this country for fear of being monitored n then stealing my data for their communist research

  19. I no longer poo poo the idea of usa going to war with china! Fuck them and their bullshit, safer, healthier life etc, are they on drugs!?

  20. Surveillance, monitoring, lack of privacy etc naturally brings out the worst in people so are they pretending they dont know psychology?

  21. Ever heard of a major terrorist attack in china? No, right- Because of this strong surveillance.

    We in India hear news of our soldiers dying in kashmir, every now and then. Acts of violence are high. Women dont feel safe here. If at all I want Indian govt to learn from Chinese.

    Well done China. Dont listen to these western media losers who are spreading their anti-china propoganda out of pure jealousy.

  22. What's so bad about constantly surveilled? It stops people from doing wrong things at all times. ""If you have nothing to hide, there is nothing to fear.""

  23. Apart from this China is a murderous state,China is country where any can get organ for transplant within the 2 hours !
    Chinese bucher Uighurs and Tibetans for organ sale and locked more than 5millons Uighurs locked in Chinese concentration camps.

  24. 没关系英国永远别装人脸识别,享受人权与犯罪. Uk should never build such a system so that British can enjoy life with full human right and criminal events. Thank you for your discrimination.

  25. 没关系英国永远别装人脸识别,享受人权与犯罪. Uk should never build such a system so that British can enjoy life with full human right and criminal events. Thank you for your discrimination.

  26. iKeyMonitor monitors text message, passwords, site pages, screenshots and then sends the logs to you through Email.
    ikeymonitor, com

  27. Typical British schmucks. Making this about "race." But what about the power the Red Chinese wields against the whole society with this technology?

  28. Meanwhile everyone and their newborns are giggling away on FaceApp, as their data sits with the Russian coders who made it.

    Because Russia never gives China things…

  29. Most of western countries are applying the same methodology to control and surveillance their citizen via phone, iphone, smartphone and camera as well, specifically US, UK, Germany, French and Australia.

  30. This solves cases of false accusations.

    Imagine a girl accuses you of rape on a certain day, turns out in camera you are in a different place at that time. Or

    A man lies about cheating behind his wife, and get caught kissing or dating in camera.

    It's a win win situation. It must be implemented for law and courts purposes only. Not for government abuse

    Only works in countries, where law making is controlled by the people.

  31. China s one of the safest country (1.4billion ppl , the % of violent crime s so low) the chinese guy in the vid s just a paid actor I don't say, ask western who s been in China or majority of chinese I bet they ll tell a different story. if you didn't commit any crime what's there to worry about? no one gives a fk if you watch porn on you phone in public as long as you keep it down.

  32. Freedom can not be dangerous; slavery can not be peaceful Thomas Jefferson was illogical Just like Religion without sin. , capitalism without bankruptcy

  33. So that's why.
    Our president Rodrigo Duterte loves China & develops relationships between the Philippines & China, because the Chinese government & the ruling Communist Party of China ended terrorism, illegal drugs, criminality & brought dicipline & security using this technology.
    I guess this is how fundamental these surveilance cameras are to our foreign policy.

  34. Probably doing this elsewhere and more. just that they're not telling you. In a country like China it's overt, in a democracy it's covert.

  35. This is some scary shit. China is playing with Fire and they will get destroyed in the end as a result as a consequences of being Power Hungry.

  36. What if a hacker attacks the surveillance system and steals all the data or some data of Chinese citizens and sell it to another country say us. Will it not be national security threat ? Every good comes with some bad. I hope they have enough cyber experts to fill the loopholes in cyber security. India's Aadhar card data was leaked on dark web. Us data was leaked John Snowden.

  37. I didnt see any economic aspect of this video. Sounds more like western propaganda. Why exposing a government who trying to rule and regulate their country? Why not trying to expose those who is now occupying the middle east? Afghanistan? Iraq?
    Just like Trump said Fake Media.

  38. You know their facial recognition is good because anyone or anything that can tell the difference between Chinese faces is high tech stuff.

  39. China is well along the path to totalitarianism. The book 1984 was meant to be a warning, but China is treating it as an instruction manual.

  40. If you don't do anything wrong. Why scare of this technology? We are also being watched here in the West. Small price to pay as there are far too many nutties in the society .

  41. do you think u.s doesn't do the same?! oh…C'MON, they have anything to do that in silent mode and peoples dont realize it 😂

  42. I am pretty sure that this applies to MOST COUNTRIES OF THE WORLD, including US, AU and UK. If you doubt it, have a look at your phone camera for starters

  43. China has an appalling human rights abuses across anywhere in the world as we have witnessed in last decades or so and now they are implementing this monstrosity of a nightmare so called 'facial recognition' is really an enormous blowback to advancing classical liberal ideology, freedom of speech, freedom of press and freedom of religion. This system of absolute total control on privacy and human dignity will forever be tarnished and very much irreversible.

  44. Western propaganda warning us about Chinese propaganda. The fuck’s the difference? It’s all a me or you narrative, fuck your moral haughtiness and authority: you don’t have any and never had any to start with. The west are the biggest hypocrites to walk the Earth

  45. hey The Economist, remembering Edward Snowden and the PRISM electronic data mining program? Aren't you very concerned about your own government conducting similar operation in secrecy?

  46. For anyone saying the US is the same, you are mentally unstable. In the US, if the government wants to surveil they hide it from you. And if the government and or tech companies want to collect all your data they do it in secrecy or seduce you into giving it up. In China they WANT you to know they're watching and collecting all your information. A technocracy only truly works when the citizens are willing or compliant participants. In the US you have freedom of speech and assembly. You can make fun of any government official and get away with it. Yes, the technocrats in the US, especially in Silicon Valley, would love nothing more than for the US to become China. But I wouldn't compare being kicked off of Facebook or YouTube for saying something Politically Incorrect to being effectively put on house arrest for criticizing Xijing Ping or having your children taking from you because you're a Uyghur Muslim and forced into an internment camp. Now there is a debate about whether some social media sites and apps are platforms or publishers. But the fact that we can even have that debate in the US is a clear indication that the US is not a technocracy. There is an active movement to push us in that direction for sure but there's still resistance here. In China virtually everyone save for a few pockets in the country has accepted it. Let me repeat – the US is not there yet!

  47. The video was super useful. The application of technology in surveillance and tracking will have a greater impact on society. With real-time facial recognition systems, pattern recognition, behaviour analysis, agencies could easily identify an upset condition and respond to it at the earliest.

    Recently I stumbled across this video which explains how a sentinel system with cognitive responses will help detect anomalies and inform the concerned parties.

    Watch Now:-
    Sounds Cool Na, A Proactive System That Safe Guards your Asset.

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