‘Robo-camera’ threatens residents with prosecution | UK news | The Guardian

A council has apologised for installing a “robo-camera” in a housing estate garden which indiscriminately takes pictures of anyone entering, residents included, before warning them they are in a restricted area and face prosecution.

London’s Camden council said it recently installed the flash-equipped cameras in the borough to tackle antisocial behaviour but mistakenly activated the robotic voice message for one in the communal gardens of the Walker House estate, near Euston station.

In darkness the camera automatically takes a photo when triggered by a motion sensor. A voice then warns: “Stop! This is a restricted area and your photograph was just taken. We will use it to prosecute you. Leave the area now.”

In a statement the council said the Walker House camera was installed in September last year in response to an increasing number of complaints of antisocial behaviour. All of its similar cameras, manufactured by Q Star Technologies, can issue the verbal message but this was normally deactivated, it added.

“All flash cameras have the capacity to deliver voice messages when activated but in this instance it appears that voice messages were inadvertently activated when the camera batteries were replaced four to five weeks ago,” the statement said.

Camden said the cameras themselves were installed as “a temporary measure”, and added: “We do not want to stop residents from enjoying their open spaces and communal areas and under no circumstances would we want voice messages to be used in areas where they may be disturbed. The voice messages will be deactivated as soon as possible.”

via ‘Robo-camera’ threatens residents with prosecution | UK news | The Guardian.

Nice try to cover up this self-aware robot camera hell bent on prosecuting all humans :-P. We seem to have blown right through 1984 into its logical future…

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