Rail industry news (Australia, New Zealand), Train Operations, Information Technology

Eyes on the rails – rail security enhanced with facial recognition

facial recognition

Facial recognition is providing enhanced surveillance for rail networks.


Between 2015 and 2016, the Global Terrorism Index reported a 650 percent increase in fatal terror attacks[1]. These attacks pose challenges to security, as they involve identifying and stopping a single or group of individuals within a large crowd.

It is no coincidence that train stations are frequently chosen as targets for such attacks. Public transportation systems, including trains, buses, and passenger ferries, have witnessed about 2500 attacks globally since 1970, with trains and train stations being the most common targets[2].

Beyond safeguarding against potential threats, the integration of facial recognition technology offers substantial benefits in ticket verification processes and passenger flow management, enhancing the overall safety and efficiency of rail operations.

Enhanced surveillance for rail networks via the upcoming NRU-220S Series:

  • Real-time facial recognition

The NRU-220S Series, powered by NVIDIA Jetson AGX, leverages advanced facial recognition technology to deliver exceptional accuracy, even in difficult lighting conditions. This capability allows rail authorities to swiftly identify individuals, enhancing overall safety for travellers.

  • Targeted security measures

Envision a train station where access to sensitive areas is restricted to authorised personnel only. Here, unauthorised entry triggers real-time security protocols facilitated by the machine’s infrastructure, boasting four 802.3at PoE+ ports and two additional 2.5GbE ports. This network capacity accommodates a multitude of high-quality IP cameras, ensuring comprehensive surveillance and immediate response to security breaches.

  • Enhanced ticket verification

Efficiency in rail operations hinges on the seamless flow of passengers and streamlined ticket verification processes. With the NRU-220S Series robust storage capabilities, including its 64GB eMMC and M.2 2280 NVMe socket, data storage and retrieval for analysis become faster, facilitating immediate passenger data processing.

  • Real-time threat detection

In today’s world, rapid threat detection is essential. The NRU-220S Series enables a modern deep learning frameworks, which can adapt in real-time to help identify changes in passenger flow, train delays, and other unpredictable events.

Facial recognition technology has emerged as a powerful tool in the arsenal of security measures and operational efficiencies, offering a multifaceted approach to safeguarding both infrastructure and passengers.

Unlock the future of AI-processing hardware in the rail sector with the NRU-220S – find out more by visiting: https://www.backplane.com.au/product/nru-220s/

[1] https://www.economicsandpeace.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Global-Terrorism-Index-2016.2.pdf
[2] https://www.globalrailwayreview.com/article/66120/train-stations-facial-recognition/