AI Security Tested at Cannes

AI Security Tested at Cannes
AI Security Tested at Cannes

State-of-the-art security using artificial intelligence is being deployed at the Cannes Film Festival in a test for potential applications at the Paris Olympics two months later.

Some 40,000 attendees -- and some of the world's biggest movie stars -- fly into the Cote d'Azur for the festival until May 25.

Local authorities say they are using 17 experimental cameras equipped with AI technology that are supposed to "identify events or behaviors deemed suspicious" and help detect abandoned packages, weapons and people in distress.

The Cannes town hall has been asking to implement them since 2019 but has only been given permission thanks to changes in surveillance laws introduced for the Olympics that kick off in Paris in July, according to mayor David Lisnard.

He said the town already had the "densest video protection network in France", with 884 cameras, one for every 84 residents.

Cannes also has 462 emergency call buttons spread across public spaces and buildings.

"They detect, for example, the start of a fire, a person on the ground, a person with a weapon, or groups of people who shouldn't be in a prohibited zone. They detect crowd movements likely to cause human damage. In short, a whole host of situations that are abnormal for people's safety," said Yves Daros, Director of the Cannes Municipal Police.

There were concerns that mobilization for the Olympics would deprive the festival of police resources.

But Paris authorities say they are sending some 400 security forces in addition to the 200 officers and 66 surveillance agents already in Cannes.

The festival has a further 400 security guards around the main venue, the Palais des Festivals -- not to mention the many private security agents employed at all the beach, villa and yacht parties.