Innovation That Matters

Police use 3D mug shots to help spot criminals


Police in Tokyo use 3D imaging technology to better identify criminals on security camera footage.

Taking a mug shot has been common practice among police departments for decades. But having only one shot of criminals’ faces can make it difficult to identify them on CCTV footage.

That’s why police in Japan are planning to use 3D cameras to take pictures of criminals, making it easier to identify suspects from security camera footage. According to the Asahi Shimbun news site, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police will be able to adjust the size and angle of the 3D mug shots, and compare it with images taken from security cameras.

From April this year, all 102 of the city’s police stations will be fitted with the 3D imaging tech, and the law enforcers will be able to take 3D mug shots as well as well conventional pictures for their investigations. The technology will take pictures from three different directions, before illuminated the image with striped lighting to create a 3D effect.

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