Wearables for Prison Inmates: Understanding the Criminal Mind

Wearables and motion recognition technology are getting a lot of attention within sports and industrial use cases, but let’s look elsewhere. Let’s take a look at wearables for prisons and correctional institutions.


Safety of inmates and correctional staff are paramount to the successful operation of any institute. This is accomplished by gathering intelligence through various surveillance methods, all at a very high cost. Although I could not locate specific expenditures relating to surveillance, I did manage to find the average annual cost per inmate in the US and Canada:



Needless to say, inmates and crime are expensive.


With the advent of wearables, the exorbitant fee on taxpayers, and with the unpredictablity of inmates leads to one burning question: How can correctional facilities improve surveillance efficiency and lower costs by incorporating motion/wearable technology?



Measure the intensity of inmates movements:

Measuring different intensity levels of inmates movements will lead to understanding aggression, patterns, and more valuable information.


High intensity: Will immediately identify possible aggression, who is involved, and where it's occurring. For example, let’s say a riot or fight unfolds in a cell block. Motion technology will help detect such behaviour faster than traditional surveillance.


Low intensity: Can determine irregular patterns during moments of rest. For example, let’s say there's an unusual amount of motion coming from a cell at night time, this may warrant a closer look.


 wearable ankle monitor house arrest

Remember these? It's time to take ankle monitors to the next level


Measure the proximity of inmates:

Examining inmates behaviour, patterns, and connections within jail can be financially draining. Motion technology can help identify which inmates associate with others through proximity detection. This may be useful when profiling gang activity within institutions, or understanding the frequency and timing of illicit drugs/weapon deals. 


Motion technology can offer deeper insights into an inmate’s behaviour over traditional surveillance methods. It can help cut costs in prisons and increase response time as data can be available instantly.


Who knows, understanding the criminal mind might be easier than we think if we use this data to organize and research patterns of behaviour and interactions. The real question becomes whether or not prison officials will see the value in wearables like everybody else.


Toronto |

Building the future of connected devices and AI as we know it