CCTV software identifies people by their walk

Published in Horizon, 9 Feb 2016

The ubiquity of CCTV cameras makes it easy to track down criminal suspects – unless they’re wearing a disguise. But even that wouldn’t fool the latest software, which can recognise people based on their anatomy or on the way they walk.

‘Police often have high-quality records of suspects that are hiding their face,’ said Radek Štoura?, a computer scientist and owner of the software company Kinalisoft in Brno, Czech Republic. ‘Our system can help recognise such people and trace them as they move in front of cameras.’

Štoura? and colleagues’ software for the analysis of gait – that is, the particular way someone walks – has been developed with backing from the European Union. It involves taking a video and separating a human silhouette from the background – a tricky process, as backgrounds themselves often contain all sorts of colourful moving objects. […]

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