Technologies for facial recognition, mobile phone tracking, self-screening and automated gantry clearance are not new in countering terrorism. But they can be effective in countering a new enemy that is equally unseen, clandestine and dangerous – Covid-19.
Security experts have proposed that these tools be repurposed to tackle the coronavirus outbreak and reduce the manpower burden on contact tracing to find people who had been in close proximity with confirmed patients.
Mr Yaniv Peretz, director of the Counter Terrorism Certification Board, a professional development programme, said it is time to “roll out the big guns” as more people are getting infected, placing a heavy burden on health systems and contact tracing.
He was referring to high-tech gantry systems that not only scan body temperature but also use artificial intelligence to read vital signs and assign risk scores to people visiting a facility.
Entry will be denied to high-risk visitors, while a message will be sent to building management, security or medical personnel.
My Peretz said such advanced systems have been installed in Israel, China and Russia as part of counter-terrorism measures and could be used to detect those infected with Covid-19.