The New York TimesThe New York Times

A.I., brain scans and cameras: The spread of police surveillance tech

By Paul Mozur and Adam Satariano

30 Mar 2023 · 5 min read

Editor's Note

Tools of mass surveillance once thought to be widely used only in China are spreading around the world—especially the Middle East—and they are likely to revolutionize policing. The NYT reports.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — A brain wave reader that can detect lies. Miniaturized cameras that sit inside vape pens and disposable coffee cups. Massive video cameras that zoom in more than a kilometer to capture faces and license plates.

At a police conference in Dubai in March, new technologies for the security forces of the future were up for sale. Far from the eyes of the general public, the event provided a rare look at what tools are now available to law enforcement around the world: better and harder-to-detect surveillance, facial recognition software that automatically tracks individuals across cities and computers to break into phones.

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