The volume of data necessary to solve crimes continues to rise across the UK, and sharing information fast is instrumental in solving cases. With this in mind, NICE announced that its NICE Investigate Digital Evidence Management solution is now helping connect businesses and police forces.
NICE Investigate enables seamless sharing of CCTV video and other digital evidence. Two major UK retailers, Boots being one of them, have already embraced the initiative by registering their thousands of CCTV cameras with the NICE Investigate system.
NICE Investigate is a cloud-based solution that transforms manual processes around collecting, managing, analysing, and sharing all types of digital evidence. With NICE Investigate, the entire process of requesting and sending CCTV video is done electronically. Participating businesses register their cameras in NICE Investigate and can share CCTV video evidence securely and electronically.
NICE Investigate stores the contact details for each participating business along with the geolocation of each CCTV camera. Investigators can view camera locations on a map when a crime occurs and instantly send out an electronic request for the relevant CCTV footage. Upon receiving the request, the business uploads the video file(s) into NICE Investigate’s secure portal. As they are uploaded, video files are virus-checked, automatically converted to a playable format and deposited into an electronic case file where they are available to the investigator for viewing.
The National Business Crime Centre is driving the initiative, a UK resource created out of Home Office Police Transformation Funding to improve the partnership between the business community and police.
Boots, the largest pharmacy health and beauty chain in the UK with 2,336 stores, is among the first retailers to join and a large UK supermarket chain. When businesses register with NICE Investigate, they can share videos with participating UK police forces. Currently, 15 UK police forces and organisations, including Hampshire Constabulary, actively use the NICE solution to manage digital evidence and conduct investigations.
Iona Blake, Security and Incident Manager, Boots explained, “We have a large number of stores with both internal and external CCTV cameras for investigating all types of crimes and incidents. The addition of the NICE Investigate technology allows Boots to engage in the right level of data sharing with local police forces. For us, it’s all about how can we get better at reporting crimes. In addition to improving efficiency and saving time, this program has really changed the dynamic of our relationship with the police. Boots may be the first to use the NICE platform, but I’m sure we will not be the last as more retailers and police forces come on stream.”
Patrick Holdaway, Superintendent at the City of London Police and Lead for the National Business Crime Centre, said,
“NICE Investigate provides a great opportunity for police forces and businesses to work together to ensure the swift collection of evidence allowing the police to bring offenders to justice as effectively as possible.”
Chris Wooten, Executive Vice President, NICE, stated, “The need for businesses and police forces to work together is greater than ever. The volume of crime is rising, and getting digital evidence into the hands of police investigators can be a time consuming, drawn-out, manual process, requiring officers to travel to the business location to copy and collect the evidence. With lean budgets and forces short-staffed, time is limited. NICE Investigate helps businesses and police forces breakthrough this log-jam by removing the time-consuming manual processes.”