Advances in location analytics fuel law-enforcement applications
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Using intelligent analytics to predict movements
Privacy advocates have raised concerns about high-accuracy location technology, but its use is a key component of the ability to leverage intelligent analytics to prevent attacks on lives and property. The goal of intelligent analytics is to enable a law-enforcement analyst to filter a large set of possible suspects using multiple inputs and an algorithmic engine with rules. Intelligent analytics takes these inputs and identifies patterns to assess threats presented by various suspects. The important addition of high-accuracy location data to the set of inputs elevates the analysis beyond what can be achieved by only reviewing financial and travel records.
Location analysis immediately depicts relationships between suspects, and between the suspects and their targets. Modern analytics engines are capable of reviewing millions of records to connect the dots, and the Obama administration’s recent move to allow them access to data for a longer period only will strengthen these capabilities.
Having obtained a significant increase in their surveillance abilities due to the addition of high-accuracy wireless location, many law-enforcement agencies are looking toward the future and the possibility of integrating even more advanced features. For instance, some are exploring how they might connect this location capability with an extensive closed-circuit camera network to create an advanced video surveillance system, and are refining predictive-analytics capabilities by adding additional information such as banking and travel data. At the same time, law enforcement must operate within the privacy regulations mandated in the country’s legal code, balancing the need to anticipate and prevent the criminals’ next moves with preserving the civil liberties of law-abiding citizens.
With high-accuracy wireless location enabling activities such as predictive analytics, mass location, and other advanced surveillance techniques, select law-enforcement agencies around the world already have been able to find the proverbial “needle in a haystack,” and enhance security and surveillance of high-crime areas. Having the ability to track targets and use geo-fences to monitor defined geographies has boosted the ability of law-enforcement agencies to prevent crime. Through the intelligent use of cutting-edge technology, these agencies have ensured that they are able to proactively and efficiently manage threats and gain an advantage in public-safety and other mission-critical efforts.
Bhavin Shah is vice president of marketing and business development for Polaris Wireless.