Scientists in China have unveiled a new facial recognition “super camera” that is raising serious concerns about civil liberties.

The 500-megapixel device was debuted last week at the International Industry Fair. It is reportedly four times more detailed than the human eye and capable of capturing every face in crowds of up to tens of thousands.

The system was created at Fudan University with help from the Changchun Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics and Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

It is suspected that this new camera system will be utilized in China’s social credit system which grants citizens points based on the way they live their lives, with criteria that include donating to charity and following the law.

China currently tracks its citizens and gathers data on their behavior with the help of over 200 million CCTV cameras.

This new super camera would increase the Chinese government’s ability to keep tabs on its populace. Some of the punishments for poor behavior under this social credit system include limited access to travel and education options.

PCMag points out that the task of processing 500-megapixel photos is likely to be too intensive for this system to employed straight away on a widespread scale. It is likely, for now, to remain a tool to be used infrequently.

Surveillance cameras
Washington, D.C. surveillance cameras. Photo Mix/Pexels