There are more than a billion surveillance cameras in operation around the world and more than half of them – roughly 540 million – are in China.
The Chinese Communist Party is actively working towards having a comprehensive profile on every single one of its 1.4 billion citizens. They’re making this goal possible by using the staggering number of active surveillance cameras in the nation, according to research from an investigation by the New York Times and ChinaFile. For every 1,000 Chinese citizens, there are at least 372 cameras tracking their every move.
Profiles of every person in China are being built from three interconnected sources: data retrieved from surveillance cameras equipped with facial recognition technology, hidden smart phone trackers, and biometric information collected from every citizen.
Notably, there appears to be no connection between the number of surveillance cameras in an area and crime or public safety.
Voice recognition software is also allowing officials to record public conversations within a 300 foot radius, which is then matched to the speakers image provided by the cameras.
The Chinese government is also collecting smartphone data, using tracking software that allows them to see apps on a phone, connect to the phone, and track that person’s location in real time.
As the Chinese government tracks its citizens’ every move, Chinese Communist Party officials said China is willing to work with Russia to establish a new world order, adding to concerns that China’s invasive surveillance efforts could reach a global scale.
“The Chinese side is willing to work with the Russian side to continuously implement high-level strategic cooperation between the two countries, safeguard common interests and promote the development of the international order in a more just and reasonable direction,” said Yang Jiechi, the director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Communist Party of China (CCP) Central Committee, according to a Foreign Ministry statement obtained by Bloomberg.