Why Comprehensive, Centralized Investigative Tracking Capabilities Are Essential to Your Department
Our ability to generate digital evidence is exploding, and policing is becoming a high-tech profession. Yet, most departments aren’t keeping up with the demand to efficiently collect, store, organize, synthesize, analyze, and utilize it all during an investigation.
It’s no longer just computer files, phone records, and business security systems generating digital evidence, either. Crime-scene images, fingerprints, DNA analysis, lab reports, victim and witness interviews, expert testimonies, 911 calls, and emergency responder radio traffic data – all of it is stored digitally. Plus, there’s mounting evidence coming from communications and cloud service providers, sensors, biometrics, videos from bystanders, and surveillance systems at private homes and businesses.
If your team doesn’t have a system in place to easily organize case data, communicate with all stakeholders, and help investigators resolve the case and share their findings, you’re running the risk of missing a critical connection or losing evidence.
Policing Is Becoming Digital: Is Your Agency Keeping Up?
Do you have the space, time, resources, and knowledge required to manage every aspect of your investigations? How long would it take you to find, organize, synthesize, analyze, and utilize all of the digital and physical data associated with a single case? What falls through the cracks when you can’t manage it all?
In theory, more data should lead to better outcomes. But if you don’t have a convenient, easy-to-use system in place to organize, protect, analyze, and contextualize your data, you can’t use it.
Many agencies are still storing evidence and data on CDs, DVDs, or on-premises servers. These antiquated solutions are labor intensive, prone to error, and often forensically unsound.
As digital evidence becomes easier to manipulate, it’s even more important that law enforcement and prosecutors can ensure proper chain of custody. If your current system can’t prove the following, you’re opening yourself up to reasonable doubt in the mind of a jury:
- Nobody has tampered with your digital evidence
- The data you provide is authentic and unchanged
- The evidence was logged accurately
- Access to evidence was properly controlled
The technology required to sort, analyze, and utilize data is much more complex than most home-grown data storage solutions can handle. Antiquated systems for managing digital evidence cost agencies time and money and cost communities justice. CDs and DVDs are manually copied, physically mailed, or personally transported in each step of the process. Discs deteriorate and get misplaced. Storing digital files on servers also poses problems. It’s difficult to find data by case number, investigator, or date.
Some agencies are establishing better use of investigative data through a mix of more sophisticated storage methods. But different types of evidence and data are often siloed in different storage solutions, so workflows remain largely manual and disconnected, creating a serious risk of missing connections or critical information.
None of this data has any value if it can’t be easily accessed, shared, contextualized, and analyzed. The time involved in the manual processes required to sift through digital data can be significant, and there are times when critical digital data simply doesn’t get to the prosecutor on time or at all.
In fact, disorganized, underutilized data may be one of the biggest challenges in the investigative process.
Disorganized Investigative Data May Be One of the Biggest Challenges in Policing
What are the consequences of using multiple systems to track your investigation?
Missed Critical Connections and Patterns
When data is siloed in disparate storage systems, it’s not easily contextualized, and it becomes difficult to draw the right connections.
When the data you need isn’t easily accessible or laid out, it can be challenging to develop an accurate timeline or tell a straightforward story of the case.
When it’s difficult to share relevant data and details with key stakeholders, critical awareness is lost.
Lost Time, Lost Convictions
When there’s more data than a department can handle, prosecutors don’t get evidence on time to prepare properly, and sometimes they don’t get it at all. Communities can’t afford to use a system that doesn’t allow them to easily collect and manage all digital evidence in one place.
What Features and Benefits Will a Good Investigation Software Offer?
Look for a solution that will integrate with all of your systems that generate digital data, such as in-car and body-worn camera systems, CAD software, and your RMS. When data can be rapidly or even automatically submitted to your system, it reduces the risk of loss or compromise.
The right investigation software will unify all of your digital data in one simple place. Visualize patterns, connections, and timelines that would be difficult to establish without easy data unification.
Officers can make evidence immediately available across the criminal justice system in minutes, without ever leaving the street. Anyone with the proper permissions can access or securely share evidence from any computer, any time of the day or night.
Security & Defensibility
Security features enable customized permissions and record who created, uploaded, updated, or accessed any files and at what time, ensuring a complete chain of custody.
Authenticate digital data to prove it’s original and untampered with.
Folders and filter functions make it easy to easily find and retrieve data, even when you have thousands of files.
The right CJIS-certified, cloud-based system will back up evidence in several places and has security-control measures in place to ensure the right people see the right things.
There are a number of features to consider when investing in investigation software, including flexibility, scalability, and expertise. It’s also important that the manufacturer you choose doesn’t only have expertise in software, but also in law enforcement. Software developed by law enforcement professionals, for law enforcement professionals, will be purpose-built to meet your unique challenges.
Are You Ready to Embrace Innovation that Enhances Community Safety?
The digital evidence deluge will only get increase in the future, but it doesn’t have to be detrimental to your department. Turn this challenge into an opportunity by investing in a software solution that helps you manage every step of the investigation process.
Designed to combine the best features of all Omnigo evidence management solutions, Investigation and Case Management allows users to easily organize case data and communicate a clear, straightforward story of the crime scene.
For more than 20 years, Omnigo software solutions have been the preferred choice for law enforcement, education, healthcare, gaming, hospitality, and corporate enterprises. Currently, Omnigo’s solutions are used by over 2,000 customers in 20 different countries. At Omnigo, we’re committed to helping customers secure their organizations’ property, control operational costs, and ensure the safety of the general public.
We believe our customers deserve the best support available to protect their people, assets, and brand. We also understand how challenging it can be to protect the community without the proper resources. We’re here to arm users with the best tools in the industry. With a team that includes former law enforcement, first responders, and other public safety professionals, we’re uniquely qualified to understand exactly what our customers need to protect their community.
Protect Your Community With Effective Software Solutions That Drive Improved Efficiency
Schedule your customized demo