I recently had the pleasure of presenting at a UK IT Leaders virtual event with Chris Phillips, a renowned expert in the field of public safety and the Ex-Head of the National Counter Terrorism & Security Office.
The focus of Chris’s presentation was the importance of capturing and recording information around an incident in order to support an investigation and collate admissible evidence. As he simply put it, from an evidence point of view ‘if it’s not recorded, it didn’t happen.’
We often think of public safety as dealing with that major incident and ensuring we capture all of the information as it happens to not only deal with it, but later thoroughly investigate it. However, Chris explained that it is far more than that.
He spoke of what he termed ‘creeping events,’ a series of small and seemingly insignificant events that can build up to something more major. In these cases, it is vital to be able to join the dots, analysing what may appear as unconnected incidents and spotting links early to prevent that major event.
Chris also talked about ‘slow burn’ events, things that happen that are then re-examined and investigated many years later and hence the need to capture everything now in order to ensure it is secured and easily accessible if and when it may be required.
The points that were raised by Chris Phillips were highly relevant to the way we think at Liquid Voice and the solutions we provide to capture, analyse and retain critical information and evidence in the world of public safety. Let me explain.
It’s All About Perspective
We have all seen examples of where we are played a partial video clip that appears to show what has happened, only to then see the full clip and gain a totally different perspective. In order to deal with an incident and effectively investigate it requires capturing the full perspective.
This is why having a recording platform that is able to ingest every feed is essential. At Liquid Voice we capture phone calls, radio conversations, SMS, CCTV footage and video footage from vehicle cameras and bodycams. We augment this with information automatically pulled from your command-and-control systems and utilise geo-location data to tag not only what was said, but where it was said.
We also allow you to ingest other sources of potential evidence such as smartphone or dashcam footage, recorded interviews or captured information in documents or emails.
Where this gets smart is in the ability to link the disparate pieces together chronologically to allow an incident to be reconstructed and a full perspective to be gained.
This ability to quickly capture, digitalise and link multiple feeds both during and after an incident can significantly accelerate an investigation. Officers investigating an incident can immediately replay the incident as this is captured and retained in one system. This significantly reduces the time to collate evidence removing the time-consuming manual effort of piecing things together.
As new evidence emerges, this can be quickly ingested into the recording platform to fill any gaps, to collaborate existing information and reduce the time in establishing that holistic perspective and provide sufficient evidence to act.
Spotting The Non-Obvious
The ability to transcribe voice interactions and video footage into structured text opens up a world of possibility to spot the non-obvious or to connect the seemingly unconnected. Advances in speech processing and analytics technologies is allowing us to do some clever things in terms of automatically mining captured incidents. Spotting the use of a particular phrase can flag potential links between apparently unconnected incidents and patterns on timing or location could identify a potential trend that could be detected early before it escalates.
Preserving The Past
There are many examples that demonstrate how vital it is to preserve recordings as these could prove highly relevant in the future – cases where an incident can be traced back to previous smaller incidents which will be vital as part of the investigation, or cases that are re-opened or subject to an inquiry many years down the line.
The challenge is how do you preserve these recordings and ensure that they are accessible for many years to come? Organisations evolve the technology they use, as such the recording platform that was in place last year may have been superseded by a new system that is operational today. Traditionally, this has been done by simply maintaining all of the legacy platforms that have ever been used, an expensive option that is also fraught with challenges when you need to retrieve information and it makes it impossible to analyse or link recordings between platforms.
We address this critical need by allowing you to bring your past with you onto your new platform. We ingest previous recordings, further augment captured information and smartly index this to create a single, secure, unified repository for all of your recordings.
Whether dealing with terror attacks, organised crime or a major incident, Chris Phillips believes that capturing every piece of available data is key and leveraging the technology that is available in this area is critical in helping the public safety sector to respond effectively and to investigate quickly to deliver on their duty.
At Liquid Voice, we are proud of how we are innovating our technology to address the challenges of the sector and deliver on what we believe is needed. If you would like to learn more about what is possible and the solutions we have put in place, we would love to speak with you. Simply reach out to me directly at [email protected]