S. Korea’s army to push for AI-based surveillance system in border regions

Members of South Korean Naval Special Warfare Group take part in a military exercise in remote islands called Dokdo in Korean and Takeshima in Japanese, South Korea, August 25, 2019. South Korean Navy/Yonhap via REUTERS. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

SEOUL, Oct 16, 2020, Yonhap. The Army said Friday it will push to establish a surveillance system that utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) along the inter-Korean border areas and coastal regions to beef up its security posture, The Korea Herald reported.

The move came after a series of security breaches this year, including illegal entries of Chinese people into a western coastal city on small boats and a North Korean defector’s undetected border crossing back to his homeland through a drainage tunnel underneath barbed-wire fences.

“By 2023, we will establish an AI-based coastal surveillance integration system and will set up additional AI monitoring equipment at bases by next year,” the Army said in a report submitted to the National Assembly for a parliamentary audit.

A total of 112 thermal observation devices (TODs) will be deployed by 2022, and 129 units of coastal surveillance radar will be put into operation by 2029, according to the Army.

It also plans to upgrade the surveillance system at general outposts along the border by 2026, while working to deploy more service members to those guard posts.

So far this year, the military has installed 250 additional closed-circuit televisions (CCTVs) and deployed 107 small surveillance drones in coastal areas, the Army said.

“We will continue to make efforts to improve the effectiveness of guard operations and tighten discipline,” the Army said in the report. (

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