Canon’s offices now have AI cameras that only let workers into their offices and office if they smile.
Tech company Canon has unveiled a new method that they believe will help boost “office worker morale.” She installed Canon Information Technology cameras with artificial intelligence (AI) smile detection technology. Now only smiling employees of the company can enter the office and offices.
This story first appeared in The Financial Times – journalists wrote about how Chinese companies are increasingly monitoring employees using artificial intelligence and algorithms. Companies monitor what programs employees use on their computers to gauge their performance; using CCTV cameras, they measure how much time they spend on their lunch break and even track their movements outside the office using mobile applications.
Canon Information Technology has announced its “smile detection” cameras in 2020 as part of its office management suite, but it hasn’t garnered much attention. However, the company has now received several purchase orders at once.
Many modern software suites, such as Microsoft 365, also have built-in surveillance tools. And as more and more people are working from home due to the pandemic, companies are implementing these functions, fearing they will lose control of their employees and record hours of work.
The researchers note that AI-assisted smile detection cameras are the least secure surveillance method. Other control systems are much more stringent and may soon appear in the offices of large companies as well.