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Using Digital Networks to Fight Crime in Cumbria Constabulary
Cumbria, UK — Managed Information Technologies Ltd. (MIT), a division of the Beaver Group and a certified Scala reseller, have supplied and installed a Scala InfoChannel® 3 digital network at nine police stations in the West Force area of Cumbria Constabulary. The “Telebriefing” system is used by the Force Intelligence Section to provide real-time information on wanted persons and other critical crime-based information to officers each day.
To date, MIT has installed nine players in nine separate, primarily rural police stations. The system is managed from the Forced Intelligence Center, located in Workington, Cumbria, where two InfoChannel® Designer 3 stations are used to create and manage daily briefing content. News, criminal alerts, new department processes, laws and acts of parliament are compiled into the briefing content and distributed over the “Telebriefing” system. To effectively distribute the content to the police stations across Cumbria, InfoChannel® Enterprise Edition Network Manager, running on a dedicated web server and connected to a WAN infrastructure in the Force Headquarters in Penrith, Cumbria, is employed. Scala’s Network Manager ensures the correct briefing information is sent to the correct police station in time to inform the police as they deploy to their communities.
The system is used to brief officers each time they are in the briefing room. Running on a PC and displayed on a 17” LCD panel, the system cycles through the daily criminal activity. The system also provides officers critical information about new department processes, laws and acts of parliament, etc. To further extend the effectiveness of the system, senior officers, including the Chief Superintendent, post textfiles to the network and provide important information to officers in the field via the system. This function employs Scala’s Textfile EX functionality and provides senior officers direct access to the system at any time of the day. The scripting function allows quick cycling between the various critical text messages. As the InfoChannel ® Network Manager detects the text messages they are distributed to all stations ensuring the latest information is always displayed.
During the implementation process it was learned that officers don’t always have the time to look at the Internet for briefing information, so the Scala “Telebriefing” system is employed to ensure very important information is available prior to their deployment to the community. It’s quick and direct information, with supporting images, gives officers all the critical information they require in an accessible medium.
The users of this system are the officers on duty and community support officers at all nine police stations; however, the beneficiaries of the system are the Cumbria communities. Providing real-time criminal information to officers in the field provides the basis for safer communities.