How safe would you feel with robot security guards in charge the next time you pass through an airport? Robot guards are officially on the way in the Aloha State! A private security firm called Securitas is working on plans to utilize a robot security guard at Honolulu’s airport by the end of this year. This will be the first time that a robot security guard will be responsible for keeping people safe on the islands. However, robot guards are already being used in a number of spots throughout the United States.
Securitas currently deploys around 30 robot guards in spots throughout Southern California. The self-driving robots are capable of uttering simple phrases. In addition, their cameras offer 360-degree views that can zoom in on objects and people. The robots even recognize license plates. Robots used by Securitas have already helped to catch and apprehend a number of perpetrators. Of course, the robots don’t act alone.
Live monitoring of the robots from a remote area allows humans to watch and store all of the footage that is captured on a robot’s camera. Robots are also being used for security on the East Coast. A security robot was deployed at the busy curbside area at LaGuardia in 2018. However, that robot made headlines for making some female airport visitors feel uncomfortable.
It’s pretty easy to imagine the blunders that could happen if robots were in charge of airport security. However, it will be a long time before robots are anything more than supplemental helpers at the nation’s airports. There is a chance that robot guards will never actually take off at all. There has already been chatter regarding the idea that robot guards are probably better suited for providing directions and answering questions than they are for stopping real threats.
Robot guards are currently only really as helpful as the people doing the work on the other side of the camera. That isn’t stopping Securitas and Honolulu’s airport from moving forward with plans to use robot guards. Securitas is currently the largest private client working on behalf of Hawaii’s government. The firm employs 1,100 employees stationed at 11 airports. Even the talking heads at Securitas are emphasizing the fact that security robots aren’t being used to replace human guards. All that the rest of us can do is to hope that the human guards at Honolulu’s airport don’t get too comfortable relying on robots to be their eyes and ears when it really counts.
[Image Source: Securitas]