Cities are becoming far more connected to an ever-growing network than ever before. A suburb in Atlanta has begun experimenting with “vehicle-to-everything” technology and this is only one new innovation in the idea of “smart cities.” With proposed ideas such as cars being able to connect to various datasets and entities across the city, many new issues and opportunities for both public and private sector entities will begin to emerge in the near future. While non-controversial things such as driving, public transportation, and even shopping at your favorite stores will take advantage of these new technologies, so will more impactful things to the community such as law enforcement. Technology and innovation have always been a double-edged sword. Policing has always been a critical part of society and “smart cities” and technology are changing how police departments tackle security issues within society.
Technology could be used in many ways when it comes to keeping the community safe. There are the more overt ones such as surveillance cameras, software to run biometrics data, and systems to log in dispatch calls. However, with environments becoming more automated and connected, there are other ways in which law enforcement departments are deterring crime. For example, San Diego implements brighter and more cost-effective “smart LED streetlights” all while they collect data on various municipal topics such as pedestrian crossings and vehicle traffic. This technology has been used to also aid SDPD in investigations and tackle crime, utilizing collected data from the light system to gather evidence during investigations to improve public safety after violent crimes. While public entities can easily and expectedly work together to tackle issues brought about by these new technologies, those in the private sector will see a shift in their interaction with their public providers in this newly interconnected environment. When a business has a share of a chessboard with every square being more connected and dependent on each other, then they will need to prioritize cooperation with their local government in order to uphold public safety. This will change policing by involving private businesses in the investigation cycle like never before. This will also lead to policing being embedded into the environment itself, however, that means an increase in the sheer amount of data that officers and relevant persons will need to ingest.
From the intelligence community, local policing, to private enterprises, data collection and management is a growing problem. With systems such as AI advancing and a merging of sectors that have not traditionally been so intertwined, this problem will only become more prevalent. Praescient Analytics has the people and expertise to tackle issues such as this. Praescient has a long history of working with police departments to reform workflows and learn how to better analyze datasets in order to help complete critical missions or investigations. From providing analysis as a service to training partners on software to better streamline information into actionable intelligence, we are headstrong on solutions-based work that can deliver results. Using up-to-date knowledge on technologies to mitigate problems such as the ones previously mentioned, the team at Praescient has the tools needed for these emerging jobs to work with partners from across the public and private sectors to step into the next stage in policing in smart cities.
Photo taken by: City of San Diego