South Africa: Tech inventions to curb human trafficking threat

3 months ago 3212

South Africa is a central hub for human trafficking with girls as young as 10 years old being trafficked. This is according to the US Department of State 2021 Trafficking in Persons report.

To curb human trafficking, South Africa is creating advanced technologies. South Africa's Council for Scientific Industrial Research is developing an infant biometric tracking system that could curb child trafficking in South Africa.

"The main technological innovation that we are working on is called biometrics. It is a firm of human identity based on who you are. It is not based on what you know or are being given. So it means that it is someone can't forget." describes Rethabile Khutlang, Research Group Leader at CSIR.

A locally based technology company is fast gaining popularity with government agencies throughout the world deploying various facial recognition solutions with advanced HD cameras to curb crime.

"So, we have developed a viable product for some of our stakeholders like SASSA and early development centers and the big stakeholder like Home Affairs. They could assist us in developing pilots," said Khutlang

While technology inventions to fight illegal activities exist, experts such as Vaughn Tempelhoff, a Product Director at Forbatt South Africa, claim that the South African government lacks in implementing these technologies.

"The biggest thing at the end of the day is that these technologies are costing a lot of money. You need to have a budget for that. A lot of these technologies and CCTV technology are that most homeowners can afford. So we sit here and help parents who ask 'are my kids home? 'You can get a notification telling you that your kids are at home. " explains Tempelhoff.

The South African government in 2020 put forward a new draft policy that aims to capture detailed biometrics of every child born in South Africa and link this data to parents' identity numbers, which are printed on all ID documents.

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