Brazilian police are taking law-enforcement cues from an unlikely source: ’80s sci-fi action movies. For the 2014 World Cup, authorities will be wearing RoboCop-like glasses outfitted with tiny cameras to scan and identify bad guys lurking in the crowd. The futuristic shades can snap 400 facial images per second—as far away as 12 miles—before sending them to a central database of 13 million faces for comparison.

Brazil, World Cup


To pick out known criminals, the system compares biometric data at 46,000 facial points. When a match is identified, a red light flashes on the interior of the lens to alert the officer. The device will soon be tested at football matches and concerts across the country, including the next World Cup, an event that’s associated with massive crowds and altercations between fans.

Military police officials from Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro have already previewed the glasses.

Military police officials from Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, which will both host major games in the World Cup, have already previewed the glasses. People may be fallible, but computers are rarely wrong. “To the naked eye two people may appear identical but with 46,000 points compared, the data will not be beaten,” says Sao Paulo’s Major Leandro Pavani Agostini. “It’s something discreet because you do not question the person or ask for documents. The computer does it.”

[Via The Telegraph]