Vodafone in conjunction with Police Search and Rescue (SAR) has developed a mobile cell site that can be fitted into a helicopter enabling rescuers to communicate with people on the ground via their cellphones in areas where there is no mobile network coverage.
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Communications minister Simon Bridges has launched a new cyber security unit saying it will help New Zealanders respond to online threats.
The Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) expects that most government agencies will have moved off Microsoft XP by April 8 and says that of those which haven’t, most should have moved within three months.
The police are considering buying handheld or portable computers that could be used to track cars and officers and later to electronically fingerprint and photograph suspects stopped on the street.
An investigation into the Victoria Police Business Information and Technology Services Department (BITS) has found damning evidence of financial mismanagement.
The report by Omubsman Victoria revealed there were "no fewer" than three external reviews, five internal audits and two criminal investigations undertaken since August 2006 in BITS' activities.
While the findings from the reviews, audits and investigations indentified a funding gap of $A39 million over three years, Victoria Police has only recently taken remedial action. The report concluding earlier action along with a more attention on the funding of individual projects would have saved "significant public expenditure".
The Ombudsman's investigation, which looked at the tendering and contracting of IT services by BITS, also found:
Victoria Police's CIO between April 2004 and November 2008, Valda Berzins, "acknowledged that she did not closely monitor the operation of the BITS budget, which in 2008-09 was approximately $191 million"
BITS enlisted "the assistance of the incumbent vendor to provide competitor analysis that would form the basis of the evaluation report and market testing"
That in February 2007, BITS "obtained the relevant approvals to redirect security services valued at more than $11 million from IBM to Fujitsu. In March 2007 the former CIO entered into a contract with Fujitsu to the value of $27.2 million dollars, some $15 million above the approved expenditure"
And in another case, BITS prepared the documentation for a $20.1 million contract in the space of 24 days. "It was a process that many in the industry estimated would normally have required anywhere from 10 to 18 months to be done effectively and efficiently."
The Ombudsman also said BITS' record keeping was inadequate and key procurement documents often had to be requested from vendors as Victoria Police had not retained or could not locate them.
As part of the report the Ombudsman made several recommendations including: BITS create a policy that prohibits adjusting contracts over a certain value without approval, according to Victorian Government Purchasing Board Procurement Policies; and establishing a central major projects management facility.
Notably the Ombudsman also said Victoria Police should take "immediate action to ensure that a full disclosure of the Fujitsu B5 contract is made on the Central Register of Major Government Contracts in accordance with Victorian Government Purchasing Board Procurement Policies and Government directions".
The full report can be seen at the Ombudsman Victoria website.
The New Zealand Police force has launched a new virtual evidence tool as they celebrate the 25th anniversary of their e-Crime Lab.
Last night, the Victoria Police force began a three-day blitz on dangerous driving, Operation Ardent, and for the first time used microblogging site Twitter to enforce the safe driving message among young drivers.
Direct law enforcement of online child protection can be expected to ramp up this year with the creation of a new police team called Online Child Exploitation Across New Zealand (OCEANZ).
The New Zealand Police want vendors to supply short message (SMS) and multimedia services, and a video calling communications system, as they consider the use of such technologies for public contact in emergency and non-emergency situations.
According to Registration of Interest documents, the Police don’t envisage the primary method of public contact – the telephone – changing “in the immediate future”, but “it is recognised that there are times when the telephone is not suitable and alternative communications methods may be more practical.”
“With the proliferation of mobile technologies and high uptake of SMS usage throughout New Zealand, Police wish to explore the feasibility of making SMS, and other multimedia technologies such as PXT, available for the public to contact Police in emergency and non-emergency situations,” the document says.
Potential vendors need to supply systems that satisfy Police emergency and operational response requirements, which operate continuously, and the vendor must detail how the SMS systems would interface with the Police’s IP-based network; all New Zealand-based SMS, MMS (multi-media messaging service) and video calling services providers; and any other external databases and systems.
The deadline for responses is 23 March.
New Zealand Police has spent $5 million on a new fleet of speed cameras that could, through a software upgrade, be used to read as well as record vehicle licence plates.
Australian company RedFlex Traffic Systems has won a contract worth up to $5 million to replace New Zealand's fleet of mobile speed cameras.
A wireless CCTV network, designed to increase public safety, was officially launched in Newmarket by Auckland City Mayor John Banks last week.
While all eyes were on the top line investments and tax cuts in this year’s budget, departmental line items reveal significant investment in core IT systems and espcially in government information security.
The new Police code of conduct includes provisions covering misuse of computer systems, but the detail is yet to be completed — with some implementation dates as late as June 2009.
Murray Mitchell has been appointed ICT manager of the New Zealand Police, replacing Rohan Mendis who retired in December.