As 2021 draws to a close,the forward march of global Surveillance states continues on Unabated. In 2019 it was projected that by the end of 2021,there would be over 1 Billion cctv surveillance camera’s operable worldwide. The 2019 estimate is based upon a (then) current number of 770 million cctv camera’s worldwide. The global surveillance industry itself has been estimated at 42 billion dollars, with an exponential increase to 86 billion by 2027.
Developing countries, including India, Brazil and Indonesia, will overtake markets such as the U.K and Japan as the world’s largest markets for security camera. Currently an estimated 54% of those cameras are in China.
China leads the way in surveillance oriented nations,of the current numbers of cctv cameras distributed around the globe 54% of those are used in China, in order to keep watch over it’s citizens. The Chinese government has taken full advantage of the growing surveillance industry,by employing not only cctv surveillance, but also with the employment of Drones, Data collection ,Facial recognition software and Advanced AI surveillance algorithms. (Which yes…incredibly they have named Skynet)
Commercially, China also is home to the world’s largest surveillance camera manufacturer’s,Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co. Ltd. & Dahua Technology Co account for 38% of total installations globally. Chinese Tech giant Huawei has it’s hand’s in the Surveillance pot as well,highlighting the growing global trend of cooperation between (outright & not so outright) Authoritarian governments and Corporations (I.E. Corporatism).
The U.S. comes in behind China at a close second with an accounted 18 % of all installed surveillance camera’s worldwide. Projections have put the number of Surveillance camera’s in the U.S. at 70 million,with an increase to 85 million by the end of 2021. For a per capita breakdown it’s estimated that there was one installed camera for every 4.6 people in the U.S. ,while there is one installed CCTV camera per 4.1 people in China. While the United States Surveillance framework is not as (outrightly)ubiquitous as China’s, The US has one of the longest running Mass surveillance networks in the world.
Additionally a recent Stanford University study has shown the growing prevalence of surveillance devices used worldwide in large cities. Globally surveillance via not only CCTV cameras,is growing. But Surveillance is also performed on the smaller commercial scale with products such as Doorbell camera’s, (Google Nest & Amazon Ring) Video Web cameras, Smartphones & Smart Assistant’s.
As if the current situation weren’t chilling enough, the next generations of Surveillance are already in development and deployment. While there once was a fear of Big Brother and a metaphorical eye in the sky type surveillance in the past, We are currently being faced with surveillance on the micro and nano scale as well,via Smart sensors,Nanotech Smart Dust, and the Growing development of 5G Smart Cities.
While theses Surveillance systems are designed to improve our Security and to enhance our lives in certain way’s. The greater danger behind the Global surveillance network(s) lies in the loss of our privacy,anonymity, and freedom of movement. Which seems to be shrinking day by day and eroded away by the actions of global governments , corporations ,and Think tanks who act (mostly only in name) on behalf of providing us with “Safety “and “Security”. Ultimately the reduction and regulation of such systems lies in our own hands and minds. We must be as vigilant as the Surveillance framework itself in protecting our selve’s and our Freedoms.