How AI Can Help Keep Homes Secure

2020-10-26 10:19:44

In 2017, one burglary occurred every 22.6 seconds. While this rate has decreased in the past few years, crime remains unavoidable. Thus, consumers are looking for better ways to protect their homes against potential intruders. Home security is expected to be worth more than $47.5 billion by 2020 — and part of what's driving that growth is new technology that may help make homes more secure than ever.

Through new developments in internet of things (IoT) technology, smart home security devices have become highly connected. They allow consumers to construct a network of smart cameras, locks and doorbells that can defend their homes. Now, developers have implemented other advancements in computer technology like artificial intelligence in smart home devices. These AI-powered smart home security systems may just make smart homes more secure than they've ever been before.

AI and Traditional Home Security Systems

Two big technology breakthroughs are currently powering smart home systems. The first is the internet of things (IoT) — internet-connected technology like smart cameras and doorbells, which can send alerts to homeowners and "talk" with other IoT devices in the same network. The second is a combination of artificial intelligence (AI) and big data technology. Smart home security systems are beginning to incorporate AI technology that can help smart home security systems more intelligently defend homes.

One of the biggest developments in AI-powered home security is smart cameras that come equipped with facial recognition technology. Many traditional home security cameras remain incapable of alerting homeowners to suspicious activity, while others rely on motion detection technology. These systems aren't always reliable. If you're just looking for motion, it can be hard to tell the difference between a bird moving in front of the lens and a potential intruder.

Due to a lack of physical evidence or witnesses, police are only able to close 13% of burglary cases. Home security cameras can help provide the evidence police need to follow up on burglary cases — but only if they capture the right images at the right moment.

AI-Powered Facial Recognition

New home security cameras have a better solution. These cameras use AI-powered algorithms to intelligently determine when movement could be cause for concern. These cameras can then automatically notify the homeowner's smartphone, showing them a still image from the captured movement.

Because the AI technology can distinguish between unimportant and important movement, homeowners with these devices know any notification from the system is one worth paying attention to. The home security system could also be directed to automatically contact the authorities if it detects suspicious activity — possibly ensuring a quicker response to the disturbance.

Some AI-powered systems may go even further and learn what each member of the household looks like. The camera can then determine whether a person standing outside the door is a family member or a potential intruder.

Over time, these security systems could even build a catalog of known individuals — family members and friends that don't need to be classified as possible threats. You could then activate specific permissions for these individuals so that your door will unlock for family members or alert those at home when a friend is waiting at the door.

The applications for AI recognition could also extend beyond security.

A robust home security network that includes smart doorbells and locks could allow you to buzz someone in while you're not at home or unlock your door if you've misplaced your keys. Just look into the camera on your smart doorbell — the system will analyze your face, then communicate with the rest of the smart network and disengage smart locks as needed so that you can get inside.

While the technology is still somewhat untested, it could be available to consumers as soon as this year. At least one home security company already has plans to bring AI-powered home security cameras to the market by the end of 2019.

Integration With Other Smart Technology

Other home security systems could go even further and bring AI to other components in the smart system, like smart locks, gates and doorbells.

For example, you could train a smart home security system outfitted with indoor and outdoor cameras to automatically record after a smart window or lock reports a break-in — and with the right angles, the system could provide police the information they need to catch the intruders. Even if trespassers can get past your physical security, your home security system could record the evidence needed to nab the perpetrator.

Similarly, smart home security systems could automatically alert homeowners if someone damages or tampers with any part of the system.

Smart gates with AI technology could be programmed to open for specific license plates or vehicles, or even deliver personalized warnings if an unfamiliar vehicle lingers for too long in front of the gate. It can tell a specific model or make of car to move on, giving those outside the gate the impression that the security system is actively guarded. These gates could also automatically alert the authorities if breached.

Home security systems that incorporate smart locks, digital assistants and phone tracking could also use AI to learn the daily routine of a household. If the last family member in the house forgets to lock the door behind them, no worries — the system can automatically secure the premise. With facial recognition technology, you won't even need a key to get back into the house — so the system shouldn't be able to lock anyone out.

If a home security system learns a household's routine, it could also use this information to detect possible break-ins, alerting homeowners if someone opens a door or window during a time when family members are typically away from home.

The Future of AI and Home Security

Rapid advancements in AI technology are finally making their way to the home security industry.

Soon, AI-powered home security systems may be able to notify homeowners when they've detected a potential intruder — or even alert authorities before a break-in has even begun. By using a network of smart devices like smart locks, doorbells and even gates, homeowners may be able to use AI to ensure their home is as safe as possible.

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