Mexico Orders $460M ‘Ciudad Segura’ System from Thales
Thales recently announced a 3-year, $460 million contract from Mexico City to install pervasive surveillance and monitoring systems, coupled to centralized control and rapid response. The system will process information from 8,080 video cameras and sensors located within the city, and transmits alarms to the appropriate command center operators when any unusual events or behavior are detected. It will also have the ability to track vehicles, by reading license plates. Police will be able to deploy specially equipped mobile command centers that maintain contact with the central command center.
Countries like Britain have deployed similar systems over the years, despite the obvious civil liberties and privacy concerns inherent in their construction and use. Mexico’s own needs have escalated, as the country faces what counter-terrorist analyst John Robb has called a growing “open source insurgency” of narco-traffickers and some leftist groups. The violence associated with “The Cartel War” has reportedly claimed between 6,000 – 8,000 lives over the last 2 years…
Ciudad Segura will be operated by the Secretaria de Seguridad Publica del Distrito Federal. Despite its name, it is not affiliated with Mexico’s Federal goverment. More than 500 engineers and experts from the Mexico City police department, Telmex, and Thales Security Solutions & Services will work together to implement “Ciudad Segura.”
Thales made a successful strategic decision several years to diversify its electronics, software, and optics expertise toward urban and infrastructure security systems, which accounted for EUR 3 billion in revenue during 2008. They will act as the prime integrator, and their Integration Centre in Mexico City already employs close to 200 people. Their Mexican partner Telmex will contribute its existing network, a new dedicated optical fiber network, and telecom engineering expertise and assistance. Thales release.