Mall of America installs facial recognition cameras in response to gun violence

The technology will scan mallgoers for persons of interest.
Mall of America
Posted at 2:03 PM, Jun 28, 2024

Mall of America has installed facial recognition cameras in response to gun-related incidents over the years.

The shopping center, located in Bloomington, Minnesota, said the sole purpose of the technology is to detect the presence of a person of interest.

The mall defined POIs as “individuals who are currently on a trespass at Mall of America, those who may be a threat to our environment, persons identified to us by law enforcement, or individuals who are missing or may be in danger.”

The technology works only to scan faces for POIs. Images of POIs are uploaded to the system, and the technology scans for the presence of any POIs. If no match is found, no data is stored. The system will not track or store information on non-POIs, Mall of America said.

If a POI is detected, the technology will trigger an alert. The mall said its security team will conduct up to three layers of human visual review, comparing the photo to the footage captured by the system. Mall of America said its security team has undergone extensive training to determine an accurate match.

When a match is determined, a Mall of America officer will approach a POI and follow subsequent security procedures.

“Our security team prides itself on keeping everyone who walks through our doors safe so we can provide the best possible guest experience. At 5.6 million square feet, our officers cannot be everywhere at once. Utilizing this cutting-edge technology will allow us to more quickly do what we are already doing: Identifying individuals of interest and keeping Mall of America and its guests safe. We take safety very seriously and we are continually evolving our strategies to enhance our security efforts,” said Will Bernhjelm, vice president of security at Mall of America, in a press release.

Last month, a Minneapolis teenager was sentenced to 30 years in prison for a fatal shooting at Mall of America that happened during the 2022 holiday shopping season, according to The Associated Press.

Mall of America has tapped technology company Corsight for its facial recognition system.