What looks like the ultimate playground toy could end up being the future of CCTV and surveillance in general. The Daily Mail reports that a new “flying robot intelligence system” dubbed the Aeryon Scout has been developed by Canada-based Aeryon. It has a top speed of 30mph, a maximum altitude of 500ft and the ability to zoom in to a close-up from an astounding 300metres away. It is also incredibly simple to use. By pointing to a place on Google Maps with the touch-screen controller, the robot instantly flies there to record high quality video.
The company are attempting to acquire permits to fly the Scout in America, and have already spoken to a variety of law enforcement and security agencies who are interested in it’s versatility and ease of use. Due to the fact it can be fitted into a small, covert suitcase, it can be deployed almost anywhere instantaneously without attracting attention. Pictures from the attached gyroscopic camera can be beamed to any sort of electronic device, from a central computer to something as small as an iPhone.
The Aeryon press release indicates it is designed primarily for the use of police forces and military:
“In today’s world, instant access to high-quality aerial intelligence is a requirement in the field, not a luxury. It can be the difference between mission success or mission failure, or in some cases, lives saved versus lives lost.”
“The Aeryon Scout instantly provides aerial intelligence to where it’s needed – to the people in the field. With a touch screen interface and a system that snaps together in seconds, any soldier, officer or civilian is capable of gathering professional quality aerial intelligence within minutes.”
So far, there are no indications that British police are seeking to utilise this surveillance product, but with the growing proliferation of CCTV cameras it seems inevitable that it will be used for spying on individuals as well as crowd control for riots and other forms of public disorder. Big Brother Watch will be keeping a close eye on developments…