The urgent challenge for security personnel to noninvasively scan people in real time and in public to detect and “see” if they are carrying weapons or explosives without physically searching them could soon be solved with the launch of SWORD by Royal Holdings Technologies Corporation (Royal Holdings).
SWORD attaches to a Google Pixel 2 XL smartphone and Apple’s iPhone 8 Plus. It is accessed and controlled via a fully customizable and dedicated app. From a distance of up to 40 feet, security agents or law enforcement personnel can scan individuals in a crowd or an approaching person of interest simply by pointing their smartphone at them with the SWORD device attached. They will be able to non-invasively determine if someone is carrying a weapon or explosive - all without the need for a physical search - and rapidly identify a person of interest. SWORD can be used to scan backpacks and handbags that are being carried or have been left unattended. It can also detect listening devices used for espionage and intelligence gathering.
A featureless outline of the person being scanned is displayed, alerting agents to location and type of concealed weapons or explosives. Royal Holdings employs artificial intelligence (AI) to crosscheck and verify weapons and explosives with its cloud-based database. In addition, built-in facial recognition operating in real time compares suspects to watch lists for positive identification. SWORD operates globally and features real time location sharing and generates real time alerts in the event of a mass shooting, terror threat, or terror attack.
“The advent of SWORD marks a paradigm shift in the safety and security sector,” explains Barry Oberholzer, CEO and co-founder of Royal Holdings. “One portable and smart device effectively addresses the four main challenges that have been plaguing the industry in this age of mass shootings and bomb threats: portability of scanning devices; non-invasively determining if someone is concealing weapons or explosives, and if so, what type; and immediate and accurate recognition and verification of a person of interest.”
For law enforcement and security agents, SWORD increases safety and reduces uncertainty in challenging situations. Response time to possible threats is cut to mere seconds, empowering safety and security teams with vital information they can use to proactively diffuse or contain a potential threat--all based on previously verified data.
SWORD can identify a wide array of hidden threats by comparing incoming data to a comprehensive database that Sentinel Technologies maintains all known weapons and explosives currently in circulation. “Once a subject is scanned and the device verifies they are carrying,” Oberholzer continues, “SWORD uses AI and machine learning to rapidly identify material, shape, and size. Then, in conjunction with a 3D image of the knife, firearm, or bomb, all information is transmitted to smartphone mobile interface so the agent can evaluate the data and take appropriate action.”
The facial recognition feature identifies anyone in a crowd who matches a pre-loaded watch list and alerts the agent using SWORD. “Companies build their own custom database of persons of interest who may pose a threat to the organization, its employees, or customers. We can further expand that list by providing data on suspects from the terrorism watch list,” says Oberholzer.
Protection of privacy is a fundamental consideration in the development of SWORD. “This device will be used at mass events or places where people most likely already have a ticket. Privacy policies on those tickets apply, and in the majority of cases those policies inform people they will be subject to scanning,” adds Jaromy Jannard-Pittario, COO and co-founder of Royal Holdings. “SWORD doesn’t store any details of a scan. We don’t build and maintain databases of specific people companies look out for--they do that themselves. We solely provide the sharply focused technology needed to identify and verify people, weapons, and explosives.”
SWORD is based on a programmable 3D sensor that penetrates objects via radio frequency technology. When a security agent directs the handheld device at a person and begins scanning, an array of antennae transmits signals towards the individual, illuminating the area in front of the person. The same antennae receive returning signals which are captured and recorded by a System-on-Chip (SoC) integrated circuit.
SWORD simultaneously interfaces with two databases: one for weapons and explosives, one for persons of interest on a watch list developed by the user. The facial recognition feature scans the person’s face, checks the image against the watch list, and alerts the user if there is a match. Should an individual displaying threatening behavior not be on the watch list, SWORD can access an extensive, strictly managed law enforcement database.
All of these functions occur in milliseconds, giving agents in the field the edge they need to prevent or mitigate harm in a potentially life-threatening situation. The SoC collates all necessary data and transmits the resulting information to the mobile app interface which displays a visual 3D graphic of the data. The user can then determine the risk and threat level and take effective action.
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