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      Published 7 days ago by Matthew Hetherington

      The police service today faces unprecedented challenges; Increasing violent crime, both within society and against Police Officers, a rise in crimes such as fraud and cyber-crime and social/political unrest as a result of the Black Lives Matter protests, all in the setting of the Covid-19 pandemic.

      Meanwhile, the costs of crime prevention and investigation have increased against a backdrop of budget constraints which has cut the number of frontline officers and support services. For some Police Forces around the world this has driven a more strategic approach to technology acquisition and deployment, and as a result, these organisations are starting to deliver significant operational benefits through more effective policing and criminal justice services.

      In such a rapidly changing environment, existing practices and workflows that rely heavily on manual processes and disparate IT systems simply can’t cope. With data such as crime scene photography, Body Worn Video and CCTV footage stored on different systems, not to mention case files being held on paper, officers spend too much time chasing down information and updating multiple systems and too little time on the frontline. Likewise, control room operators often have to ‘swivel-chair’ manage, moving between information sources and interpreting each in turn. This causes delays in critical decision-making that can seriously compromise a response.
      The key is to harness new technology to ensure processes and systems work efficiently. That’s where our ecosystem comes in, the first and only mission-critical ecosystem built specifically for policing. It unifies information onto a single platform so teams get the information they need, when they need it. Imagine how much time an officer would save having to update just one single system instead of a dozen for a single incident. Or how quickly a control room operator could detect an incident and activate a response if all the information was right there in one single pane of glass.
      The new policing technology ecosystem must bring together control room software applications, digital evidence, video security and analytics and service-critical two-way radio communications into one seamless solution. With these elements working together, police forces can receive real-time data and video information from across the public safety landscape to support each stage of an incident lifecycle. Every police officer and dispatcher is connected and can see the full picture to effectively bring about a successful outcome
      It’s not all about the solution though. How you deploy and manage that solution is just as important. Today’s ICT projects are increasingly complicated, creating advanced environments that are capable of evolving to support a plethora of new devices, technologies and systems. Often the development of these ICT projects are hampered by having to manage multiple suppliers, each of which may cause additional complications. Utilising a single supplier can result in a lower risk project with improved outcomes for the customer, as well as simplified ongoing maintenance and development. 

      Navigating through these challenges requires technological expertise and, in the case of police forces, an understanding of how ecosystems work in a public safety environment. With over 90 years of service-critical experience in public safety, supporting over 100,000 emergency services, national security and enterprise customers around the world Motorola Solutions is an ideal partner to choose. We have Public Safety and Security running through our DNA, it’s our only market focus, and all our investments are concentrated on building our end-to-end policing technology ecosystem. 
      Having the right technology platform and partner on board enables you to address the issues you face now and helps prevent issues occurring in the future. It allows you to plan long term and continuously innovate with confidence so you can drive operational efficiency while optimising cost.
      For more about our mission-critical ecosystem and how it works, click here.





      David Shorland
      Sales Director at Motorola Solutions

      Connect with David on LinkedIn

    • One in ten university students is a victim of crime but new technology will make students safer.

      Published May 21 2020, 1:14 PM by Matthew Hetherington

      University is often the first time that many young adults spend prolonged periods away from home. This newfound freedom is an exciting time, as they learn new skills, develop new social circles and continue their educational journey. 

      However, there are risks to students and university staff as often campuses do not have walls and a true cross-section of the public have access, not all of whom have good intentions. Unfortunately this means that university can be the first time that young adults come into contact with crime. 

      The complete University Guide compiled reported crime statistics and created a league table for universities looking at reported crime in areas where students live.* The data they provide shows three core crime statistics including robbery, burglary and violent or sexual offences and gives values of victims per 1000 people.

      The headline figures for universities in England and Wales in 2019 are as follows.

      On average (acknowledging the data set is not perfect) there is approximately a 5% chance of being a victim of crime whilst on or near a university campus in term time while the worst-case scenario is as high as nearly 10%.

      How can Police forces, institutions and university security help protect staff and students from such criminality and provide a safer public space?  

      By working together, Police, Public Safety and university security organisations can establish a system of security with layers of redundancy. Creating a database of safe-designated and threat-designated individuals and vehicles allows the Police,  University or Campus location oversight teams to develop watchlists of sex offenders, known criminals, disgruntled former employees, barred community members such as gang members and drug dealers, non-custodial parents or estranged partners and ensure they cannot gain access to the most vulnerable campus areas. 

      The best approach is a multilayered system of passive and active checks that protect against unauthorised access and provide multiple intervention opportunities. 

      Protection starts off-site and extends right up to your building entrances 

      Outer perimeter

      All roads approaching and surrounding your university campus or target areas act as an outer perimeter. By placing fixed ANPR cameras in this outer perimeter you can catch a potential threat before it enters the campus proper or simply look for trends of unauthorised vehicles.

      Middle perimeter

      The middle perimeter consists of roadways and parking areas that have been identified as high risk or prone to crime. Place additional fixed ANPR cameras in the middle perimeter to let you know when an unauthorised vehicle is on location or take your protection one step further with CCTV security cameras to allow oversight of on-site activities. 

      Inner perimeter

      Entrances to buildings and sensitive locations are the last line of defence against a potential threat. By utilising an inner perimeter facial recognition system that connects to existing IP CCTV you can identify problematic individuals before they have the chance to act.

      By enacting a layered approach and integrating it with an active watchlist, police and on-site security can better monitor ongoing activities while protecting those most vulnerable to crime. To learn more about physical security solutions for universities and educational institutions, visit Vigilant CampusWatch





      Chris Harrison

      Strategic Alliance Manager, Video Security & Analytics at Motorola Solutions

      Connect with Chris on LinkedIn



      *Official data for crime specifically against students at university is not available.

    • How a streamlined workflow can maximise the value of digital evidence and asset management solutions

      Published Feb 27 2020, 8:51 AM by Matthew Hetherington

      The availability of digital assets in UK policing is on an exponential rise. Members of the public expect to see digital solutions in place by their local police force for supporting crime prevention and community engagement. With the common use of smartphones, body-worn video and CCTV, the physical drain on the police service to gather, manage and disclose digital assets has never been higher.

      When a digital asset has been created and identified as a potential piece of evidence to be included in an investigation, that asset along with its original meta-data is now part of an important story. The asset will travel through a sequence of important events; a police investigation, become referenced and linked to a case file and eventually be disclosed as evidence in a criminal trial. 

      Today, we have the ability to technically support every step of that journey by streamlining workflows between platforms based on business rules, provide a secure audited chain of custody, and enable the public, police forces and judicial partners to work seamlessly to gain successful outcomes and prosecutions. 

      Streamlining workflows within digital evidence and asset management solutions needs to carry four immediate business benefits for the police in the UK today: 

      1. Give the general public access to a secure and controlled portal with the ability to submit an asset which is auto-tagged to an incident.
      2. Automate the ingest of multiple sources of digital assets with auto-tagging such as body-worn video
      3. Provide secure storage of the asset alongside a data pool of other potentially related assets, where investigation tools can be used to open new lines of enquiry
      4. Provide either a self serve access for Judicial partners or a fully integrated sharing platform (as in the case of the Scottish Government) to allow original evidence to be presented in court along with case file and audit report to validate the integrity of the evidence. 

      In December 2018, the UK Crown Prosecution Service updated several official guidelines due to a significant number of criminal trials collapsing due to the lack of disclosure of digital evidence. Evidence integrity was key to this, with a call to support search strategies, analytics and the ability to isolate certain elements of key evidence that may have specific privileges but still be disclosed as used or unused evidence material. 

      CommandCentral has been designed to support the Policing Vision 2025 in England and Wales and the Digital Strategy for Justice in Scotland along with national standards due to be published by the Digital Policing Portfolio (DPP) including the following national programmes: Digital Intelligence and Investigation (DII, Digital First (DF) and Single Online Home (SOLH). CommandCentral has also been designed to specifically meet the secure authenticated access and sharing requirements of the CPS, particularly defence practitioners and legal barristers. 

      Kelly Harrison. 

      Solution Manager, CommandCentral Suite 


      Kelly is presently responsible for managing the end to end portfolio of CommandCentral Suite at Motorola Solutions. An innovative software specialist with 10 years experience in Public Safety solutions including Command and Control, Communications, Mobility, Evidence and Records Management Solutions. Kelly prides herself on driving operational outcomes, in particular in overcoming complex requirements for customers with multiple ICT challenges.

      Kelly is on LinkedIn