Artificial intelligence software seeks to prevent mass shootings

National

(WDVM) — In wake of several mass shootings across the country, organizations are looking for ways to be able to stop these situations before they get a chance to happen. Artificial intelligence that can detect the presence of firearms in public places and automatically lock potential shooters out of buildings sounds futuristic, but the technology is already here.

Defendry is a company working on optimizing and spreading this software to keep the public safe. The idea behind the AI centers around preventing a shooter from being able to get to large groups of people, all while giving police and nearby security live updates on the shooter’s description and location.

“If you can keep someone out of the building, you’ve just mitigated a huge potential for further damage. Further deaths,” said Pat Sullivan, founder and CEO of Defendry.

The technology is already available and is being used in several large public areas, such as theme parks; but Defendry is constantly working on upgrading the service in many ways, such as installing bulletproof glass for customers and implementing thermal technology that will be able to detect concealed weapons.

“We wanna come at this as a holistic approach,” said Skyler Stewart, Sefendry senior vice president of sales. “There’s so many different variables in all of these situations, we can’t solve them all. We would love to, but we’re trying our best, to try to fill the gaps in these types of situations.”

The system isn’t entirely automated, however. The AI technology also comes with 24/7 assistance from human video-checkers, who can quickly confirm threats and contact the police, or dismiss false alerts.

Defendry’s software has been out for about a year and a half. And while it’s still not widely used, the string of mass shootings across the country could change that.

“It generally takes 3 to 5 years for something to become widely known, widely available — trusted if you will … It will likely be the insurance companies that mandate it,” said Sullivan.

If insurance companies see this technology as necessary for public safety, it could become commonplace sooner than later.

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