Will Driverless Cars and Sophisticated Analytics be Tomorrow’s Technology?

Dec. 25, 2017
Technology is ever-changing and in law enforcement it can sometimes be tough to keep up.

Technology is ever-changing and in law enforcement it can sometimes be tough to keep up. By the time you research a new product, get feedback, put a policy together, put out a RFP and make a purchase, it seems as though another product with newer technology comes to market. How do you know what technology/products are going to stick?

We asked some tech executives to share their predictions for what they see around the corner in the next five to 10 years:

Jody Weis of Accenture believes new analytic technologies will help police forces organize their resources (officer numbers) to fight crime, by predicting where and when crimes are likely to occur (based on historical evidence and advanced algorithms) and delivering this information to officers in real-time.

Capt. Stephen Serrao of SAS says the integration of new data sources, access to real-time information and sophisticated analytics that uncover previously unknown relationships and networks will provide a comprehensive view of a suspect or offender, at the click of a mouse or touch of a screen.

• Lee Mandel of IntraLogic Solutions says that the key over the next five to 10 years will be the linking of all types of cameras, alarms, sensors and technology to give the tools that they need to rapidly understand and respond to situations, such as active shooters.

• Greg Albrecht of Orion Labs notes that voice technology will dramatically speed up the everyday work of investigating and reporting. (For example) employees can speak English into their push-to-talk device and immediately get the Spanish translation.

Brian Higgins, Security and Safety Consultant, believes law enforcement will have to deal with unmanned vehicles, such as the driverless cars. While this new technology is a challenge, it will provide very powerful tools for law enforcement through the use of unmanned ground and aerial vehicles with the greatest benefit of improved officer safety in addition to life-saving and crime fighting capabilities.

Derek Peterson of Digital Fly (now named Soter Technologies) says that in the future, heat sensors along with magnetometers (metal detectors) will be joined with video surveillance and behavior analytics. In this case if behaviors are inconsistent and magnetometers pick up metal being transported through an area often by the same person, a warning or alert can be generated.

Jeff Chabot of Schneider Electric notes that many agencies operate on legacy infrastructure that spans numerous precincts across a city or state. As connectivity and real-time data remain critical to making new technologies as efficient as possible, law enforcement agencies will begin to adopt edge computing–IT deployments placed at the “edge” of a network, bringing computer power closer to the user…allowing technology such as real-time video to be nearly instantaneous.

Just as the tools used by LEOs evolve to meet new challenges, so will tools used by agencies that support our work. For example, DNA–once exotic and costly–is being used in new and innovative ways. It will be interesting to see where the technology trends go.  

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