Advanced Technologies Securing Tokyo Olympic Games

Advanced Technologies Securing Tokyo Olympic Games

This post is also available in: heעברית (Hebrew)

Japan’s authorities have been employing advanced technology in order to maintain security and prevent the spread of the coronavirus during the Olympic Games in Tokyo. While a lot of concern about security at the Olympic Games has been focused on the pandemic, security measures were also deployed to confront other threats, such as terrorism or crime. 

Facial-recognition and baggage-inspection systems were installed at the front gate and several other locations of the venue. 

A high-precision camera takes photos of the faces of people trying to enter, and then the system checks if they match photos registered in advance. Unregistered people will not be allowed in, even if they are carrying a pass. The organizing committee says the Tokyo Games are the first to employ a system that verifies entrants’ IDs using preregistered images of all people related to the Olympics.

Another device at the main gate helps guards check for explosives and other suspicious items on vehicles. 

Security cameras and infrared sensors are mounted above a 2.5-meter wall encircling the gymnasium. Those devices can detect unauthorized people trying to enter the premises, according to

A total of some 60,000 personnel will engage in security activities such as guarding venues and dignitaries during the Olympics.

Usually, routes connecting venues and nearby train stations are put on full alert as such “last mile” routes are prone to slip-and-fall accidents and terrorist attacks when they become crowded before and after events. But with spectators banned from most venues and public viewing events canceled in Tokyo, security staff will be dispatched mainly around venues and busy train stations, according to

Many of the 43 Olympic and Paralympic venues are located in the Tokyo Bay area. The Japan Coast Guard has conducted an anti-terror drill in Tokyo Bay near the athletes’ village in order to train in dealing with suspicious vessels. Two small high-mobility rubber boats sandwiched a suspicious ship that was running away at high speed to force it to stop. Officials also simulated a procedure of running their boats parallel with a suspicious vessel and boarding it to take control.

The Coast Guard plans to bring patrol vessels deployed across the country to Tokyo and provide around-the-clock security to key locations such as the athletes’ village.

Senior coast guard official Sasaki Wataru says the risk of terror attacks does not change much even though the Games events will be held without spectators.