Draft Community Safety & Crime Prevention Plan 2022-2027

The City of Cockburn's response to the Fremantle Herald on 9, 15 & 16 December about the the City's draft Community Safety and Crime Prevention Plan 2022-2027  

Question: Is AI able to detect antisocial behaviour?
 The City’s CCTV artificial intelligence solution can identify when groups of people start to gather and alert our officers in real time for an immediate response. As a result we can have our CoSafe officers patrolling our streets and interacting with our community without having to monitor cameras from a behind a desk.

The City’s secure CCTV network is only accessible to a handful of employees and the AI software, which is fully auditable, is only available to an even more select CoSafe team. This added layer of security protects the privacy of our community and ensures staff comply
with the City’s CCTV Policy.

The City hasn’t rolled out facial recognition software, but it is something that is continually being explored. It would only be considered in consultation with WA Police and under a common direction from the WA Government.

Community Safety and the roll out of CCTV were the highest and second highest priorities respectively in the City’s Community Scorecard 2021 survey.

The aim of the draft Community Safety and Crime Prevention Plan 2022–2027 is to provide the opportunity for the City to increase its CCTV network in a coordinated approach, taking into account community feedback gained from our community consultation during the plan’s development.

Question: Can you confirm what technology company you partnered with for the AI technology?
 The City has not partnered with a specific company, our research has shown that the AI technology sector is growing in capability and we want to explore the best options to ensure we stay at the forefront.
Question: Was there any particular reason why 'Success Regional Sporting Facility' was chosen for the AI implementation pilot?
Success Regional Sport and Community Facility was selected as a trial location because of the complexity of the building and multiple user groups accessing the building. The project at Success is in two parts, testing software such as AI, but also improving the existing access control hardware at the facility.
This allowed us to test the system with rigour and ensure the technology solution for improving building access was scalable.
Question: Do you have any statistics, in terms of incident rates, since the implementation of the technology at 'Success Regional Sporting Facility'?
 Since implementing the trial, the new system has saved a significant amount of time for CoSafe, particularly patrolling the facility and remotely rearming the building in the event the alarm was falsely activated.
Question: Is 'Success Regional Sporting Facility' still the only site where the AI technology is being used?
The City has rolled out AI to several areas, including new community facilities, Cockburn Central and Success Regional Sport and Community Facility.
Question: Can you elaborate what the following means and how this is measured: AI has improved and is now "achieving high accuracy rates" (taken from the Community Safety and Crime Prevention Plan 2022-2027)?
AI technology is growing in capability and in recent years the number of false alerts has been reduced by software improvements. Having a higher level of accuracy allows CoSafe to be confident in the alerts received by the AI software.
Question: Can you provide any more information, especially numbers, on the following statement in the Prevention Plan: "The City is currently rolling out a comprehensive AI solution to many CCTV cameras around the city?
At this stage no firm numbers are available as the technology is rapidly changing and the Plan will be released for community consultation. Subject to the consultation findings the Plan may include more or less use of AI in the future.
Question: Can you detail the algorithms, currently in use, that lead to behaviour being considered suspicious?
Every AI solution will have its own way of processing footage, but generally speaking, the solution we utilise is able to automatically identify a person and we have the ability to add logic rules in place for alerts. For example, we can tell the software to alert us if more than two people congregate in an area past a certain time at night.
Question: Have any trials been undertaken using facial recognition technology in Cockburn?
Yes, the City continues to trial facial recognition technology for internal and external use. The deployment of this technology is always done in consultation with WA Police and with regard to privacy.
Question: Has there been any privacy-impact analysis conducted in relation to the AI technology?
 In the lead up to deploying our AI solution, an external review of our CCTV Policy and operating standards was completed. The management of the CCTV network aligns to the ISO standards for management and network security.
Question: Does the AI technology listen and/or record any audio?
No it does not. Some cameras do have the ability to record audio and a microphone, but this is only used when an officer is conversing with someone remotely. Under State legislation it is an offence to record audio if you are not involved in the conversation.

For more information contact

Media and Communications Officer
City of Cockburn

Email [email protected]

Phone 08 9411 3551

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Cockburn Nyungar moort Beeliar boodja-k kaadadjiny. Koora, yeyi, benang baalap nidja boodja-k kaaradjiny.
Ngalak kaadatj dayin boodja, kep wer malayin. Ngalak kaadatj koora koora wer yeyi ngalang birdiya.

City of Cockburn acknowledges the Nyungar people of Beeliar boodja. Long ago, now and in the future they care for Country.
We acknowledge a continuing connection to land, waters and culture and pay our respects to the Elders, past and present.