NSW Police tracks evidence with Hardcat

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NSW Police tracks evidence with Hardcat

Under the tender, Hardcat will develop the first phase of a new Forensic Information Management System for one of the world's largest police organisations, with the project to go live in March 2010.

The web-based application allows the NSW Police Forensics Services Group to track the full lifecycle of every piece of evidence gathered - from the crime scene or other source to the courtroom and through to ultimate disposal or long-term storage.

Rodney Dalton, director at Hardcat, said NSW Police are now armed with a cutting edge system that manages all evidence and information handled by the forensics group.

"This system will allow them to know where any piece of evidence gathered by any officer anywhere in the state and also to provide easy, instant access to complete histories on pieces of information and evidence," he said.

"It is about providing good governance, complete accountability and easy access to information that might be vital to officers' work in the lab or in the field."

Carlene York, assistant commissioner, Commander of the NSW Police Force, Forensic Services Group said forensics science is moving ahead at a terrific rate and has become an intrinsic part of investigative police work.

"New technologies such as facial recognition, chemical analysis, DNA testing and computer forensics are changing the way law enforcement agencies all over the world gather and use evidence," she said.

"This is putting pressure on all police forces to improve their ability to easily and efficiently track the full lifecycle of an exhibit.

"Most police forces around the world are still handling forensics information manually on multiple databases and spreadsheets."

Each piece of evidence handled by NSW Police officers will now be identified through a bar code or RFID tag and then accounted for through a dynamic database which officers can access from wherever they are working - in the field, the laboratory or even from the courtroom.

Every time the evidence is moved, analysed or handled in any way, bar code (or RFID) scans record the officers involved and the action taken.

Hardcat's FIMS solution is one of the first specific applications to be developed on Hardcat's new nGenÔ platform.

Dalton said it utilises a C++ based application server linked to a SQL database managed by core Hardcat business rules that have been customised to suit the FIMS requirement.

Web-access is managed through a rich user interface developed using Microsoft's new Silverlight platform and reflecting the defined NSW Police Web standards.

Hardcat won the deal over 15 other final local and international tender applications, said Dalton.



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