3 Hot Trends in Public Safety This Summer

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Summer is almost here and the heat will soon be here with it. If you are like me, you can’t wait for it to get hot. The summer brings the lake, time with the kids and sunny beaches. Before you shutdown your computer and head outside let’s take some time to look ahead and see what trends are HOT this summer in Public Safety.

  1. Body camera storage costs can be too HOT to handle

…cost of 300 body cameras to equal $18,000/day

You can not turn on the news or read a paper without seeing a story about another police department deploying a body camera pilot. Even though many police departments are in the middle of pilots, the vast majority of cities have not fully deployed body cameras. As more and more departments deploy cameras we are seeing a lot of new concerns over the long term cost of body cameras. West Milford is just one example where the city determined that the cost of body cameras were just too high. One department determined that the cost of 300 body cameras to equal $18,000/day. This cost is forever in the cloud only model! Departments have to consider alternatives to the cloud only storage approach for body cameras. Cloud is not the only option for body cameras. Many departments are deploying storage on premises for almost ½ the cost of the cloud.

  1. Police Departments want a better way to store ALL their evidence video

In almost every meeting I sit in with customers, I hear that departments want a solution for ALL their evidence video and not just their body camera footage. Today’ police departments have to store video from many different end-points. It is very costly and complicated to manage multiple evidence storage platforms. Some departments are managing 9 or more different storage platforms for their evidence. This disconnected approach adds costs, complications and does not allow agencies to fully unlock the value of all their evidence data. Disparate systems cause frustration with the users of the evidence video. It is hard to find, hard to secure, hard to track, and even harder to manage the evidence lifecycle.

  1. Enterprise Evidence Management is KEY

It is one thing to capture the evidence. It is a whole other thing to manage the evidence and the evidence lifecycle. So many departments are focused on getting the right cameras and often forget that the infrastructure to support the new cameras will far outpace the cost of the initial camera purchase. Evidence has is not all equal. Some evidence can be deleted in 30 days, other evidence has to be kept for 1 year, 5 years, 10 years or even forever in some cases. How does a department keep all this straight? What do you do when a case is appealed or dismissed? How do you ensure your evidence is where it is supposed to be and not there when it is supposed to be deleted? These are the really hard questions that require an enterprise approach to evidence. Evidence has to be available, secure, and managed properly or there is a high chance that critical evidence could be lost when needed most.

I will dive deeper into each of these trends over the next couple weeks. Please let me know what you think and if I should add any trends to the discussion.

External references:

http://www.northjersey.com/community-news/town-government/addition-of-body-cameras-deemed-as-too-expensive-1.1528631

http://m.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/mar/24/officials-say-police-body-cameras-could-cost-18k-a/

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