Mosque Targeted in Christchurch Attacks to Install Cameras with Gun Detection AI
The Al Noor Masjid, one of the mosques targeted in the deadly Christchurch mosque shootings on March 15, is installing security cameras that use artificial intelligence to detect whether someone is armed.
- By Jessica Davis
- May 08, 2019
The Al-Noor Masjid in Christchurch, New Zealand, will soon install an active shooter detection platform, which involves security cameras that use artificial intelligence to detect whether a person is armed. The new equipment is part of a larger effort called the Keep Mosques Safe initiative, which has followed the deadly Christchurch mosque shootings earlier this year that left 51 dead and injured 50 more.
"The mass shooting at the Al-Noor Mosque was an unspeakable tragedy that no community should have to suffer," said Lisa Falzone, co-founder of Athena Security, manufacturer of the detection system. "The Keep Mosques Safe initiative is an important step in giving mosques the tools to better protect themselves from extremist individuals that wish to do them harm, so we can help prevent horrific events like this in the future."
According to Athena, the AI-capable gun detection security system can quickly and accurately detect an active shooter, as well as alert law enforcement officials before a shooter can begin firing. The company created the system as part of efforts to create a computer vision algorithm that would monitor cameras without reporting too many false positive readings.
"When a threat is detected, Athena Security's award winning security system can warn the first responders, any on-site personnel and local authorities within a matter of seconds, bridging a crucial time gap that could mean the difference between life and death," Falzone said in a statement.
The Keep Mosques Safe initiative was started by Fahad A.B. Al-Ameri, CEO of Al-Ameri International, after the Christchurch shootings.
"It gives us a great honor to have created such an initiative that aims to protect innocent worshippers, men, women and children in the houses of worship. After the tragic attack in the Al-Noor Mosque, I reached out to pay my condolences to Brother Shagaf Khan, the President of the Muslim Association of Canterbury as many had done. But, I was also committed to help support the New Zealand Islamic Community and the search started to reach an intelligent system that could help prevent such incidents happening again," said Mr. Fahad.
Athena Security said its security system would be installed at Al-Noor Masjid this week.
The Keep Mosques Safe initiative will pay for the gun detection system to be installed in mosques throughout the world, according to Stuff.