We’ve all been there: You’re lying in bed, it’s the early hours of the morning, the house is still and silent. But suddenly you hear a bump, a creek, something moves in the darkness. You lay afraid, engulfed in pitch-black fear. “…Is there someone there?”

security camera

Alarm systems and censored lights are useful, but not always reliable. They require manual setup, as well as being impersonal and impromptu. Robots, on the other hand, are able to use facial recognition when acting as security devices; this allows them to distinguish between an intruder and a resident. Sounds exorbitantly far-fetched? Quite the contrary; humanoid robots are currently used for assistance and companionship on a worldwide scale, therefore it makes sense to utilise these programmed qualities, alongside other robot categories, effectively within security based roles.

Humanoid robots as security

Within the current market, robot manufacturers boast perpetually of the sophisticated facial recognition and emotional awareness of their upcoming robotics. These qualities not only make them more personable, but can even be used to improve safety.

An example of humanoid robot security is Sanbot, equipped with security monitoring and facial recognition used to detect criminal suspects in homes. Sanbot is not only useful for home security but also in society, recently used as a recruitment aid within law-enforcement services in Dubia, recording interviews with prospective police candidates.

Sanbot Police

Even the underlying threat of law enforcement can act as a deterrent. One of the main focal-points of RoboThespian by Engineered Arts, as well as most modern robots (Pepper, Zenbo and Promobot to name a few), is that its eyes ‘follow you around the room’, proving unnerving and useful in deterring potential threats and home intruders.

Robot bodyguards

We all know the archetypical stereotypes attached to night-watch security guards. The lethargic, easily fooled individual. And who can blame them? Humans are programmed to sleep at night. Robots on the other hand…

Founded in 2013, the robotics company Knightscope create autonomous data machines aimed specifically at security within car parks, corporate campuses and hospitals.  These intelligent devices not only decrease security costs by a half, but are able to provide consistent, dependable 24/7 surveillance; essentially robotic bodyguards who can't fall to sleep on the job! Knightscope machines utilise KSOC programming and built in cameras to work alongside human surveillance, their physical threat, similarly to police vehicles, has been proven to dramatically reduce criminal behaviour.

K5

An example of Knightscopes’ genius is K5. At 62.5inches tall, 33.5inches wide and weighing just under 400pounds, K5 is best suited to outdoor spaces and terrain. Its features include licence plate registration, capable of reading 300 per minute, signal detection to identify potential suspects as well as protect businesses from unknown routers and stop intruders from circumventing security measures.

Need a hand with your security? Or maybe even an arm?

Robotic arms are up and coming within the industrial industry, but whilst they are promoted to work well within factories, they could now also assist within smaller surroundings. An example of this is Franka Emikas’ robotic arm Panda, which is able to connect to additional external enabling devices using safe inputs at its base. This provides door-opening detection, light curtains and safety mats.

So, as the world becomes busier, scarier and ever more frantic, let us be less concerned and in fact more interested in security which can protect, assist and befriend us.