AI Case Study

Chinese facial recognition technology mistakes businesswoman's face on bus ad for someone actually jaywalking

The city of Ningbo, China used facial recognition to identify people crossing the road illegally, referred to as 'jaywalkers'. The system is installed at six intersections in the city and has captured more than 7,800 incidents. However, the system showed its limitations as it got confused by the face of the famous Chinese businesswoman, Dong Mingzhu in an advertisement on the side of a bus. Authorities have admitted that the technology failed and have since update the system to prevent such errors.

Industry

Public And Social Sector

Public Services

Project Overview

"At one intersection in the eastern city of Ningbo, the face of famous Chinese businesswoman Dong Mingzhu was displayed on a public screen dedicated to “naming and shaming” jaywalkers caught by the city’s facial recognition system. The photo of Dong included a line of text saying that she had just broken the law by crossing during a red light.

Except that she wasn’t jaywalking. She wasn’t there at all. What the cameras captured was her face on an advertisement on the side of a bus that had just driven through the intersection.

Ningbo’s traffic police later posted a statement on Weibo, admitting that the facial recognition system made a mistake and said they had deleted the record of the violation. They also claimed that they had completed an upgrade of the system to prevent future such errors.

Ningbo also boasted in June that facial recognition systems installed at six intersections in the city had captured more than 7,800 cases of red light-violating pedestrians and non-motor vehicles."

Reported Results

Despite the fact that the facial recognition system has caught more than 7,800 cases of red light-violating pedestrians and non-motor vehicles, the technology made the mistake of identifying a woman's face on a bus advertisement as a jaywalker.

Technology

Function

Operations

General Operations

Background

"Chinese cities have widely deployed facial recognition systems on their streets to catch and fine jaywalkers... but sometimes it doesn’t work as planned.

Shenzhen, for example, said it has shamed almost 14,000 jaywalkers in 10 months -- at one intersection alone."

Benefits

Data