The 5 Biggest Tech Trends In Policing And Law Enforcement – Forbes

The future of crime fighting is being defined by much of the same technology that is revolutionizing business and other areas of life. Artificial intelligence (AI), automation, big data, extended reality, and all the most important trends we identify across other sectors are equally making their mark in policing.

These technologies give police officers and intelligence agencies unprecedented powers to crack down on criminal activity as they attempt in order to keep us safe. They also help to tackle the new forms associated with crime that are emerging as criminals become ever-more inventive in their own use of technology plus data.

So here’s a look at some of the latest developments in technologies that will be playing a key role in policing today and in the near long term.

Smart device data

The particular volume of data being generated is exploding, and lots of that data can potentially be useful when it comes to fighting crime. Internet of things (IoT) devices such as video doorbells and voice assistants, with their ability to capture incidental goings-on in their environment, are usually increasingly becoming valuable sources of cleverness for officials and detectives searching for evidence. Data from an Alexa smart speaker has been used by a court in the US to assist in a double murder case. And information from Fitbit fitness trackers have been utilized in several cases , including recently in the particular case associated with a man accused of killing his wife.

More than 400 police forces have partnered with movie doorbell manufacturer Ring to access data captured from their own devices (with permission through the gadget owners). Additionally , smart city infrastructure may increasingly be built with functionality to assist along with crime prevention and detection, such as controlling traffic lights in order to assist police and ambulance crews to quickly reach the scene of crimes or accidents.

One network of devices that are specifically built to help tackle crime is ShotSpotter . This consists of an array of microphones attached in order to city infrastructure, like street lights, that detect the sound associated with gunfire. It then issues real-time alerts to law enforcement officers who can react more quickly than if they have to wait for reports from witnesses in order to come within. The technology has been around for a while but is becoming increasingly common.

Computer vision

Pc vision has several significant use cases in policing. Perhaps most frequently, it will be used for automatic license plate recognition (ALPR) to enable cameras to identify vehicles and their particular drivers. A more recent application is usually facial recognition, which has also proven controversial , with one police force in the UK having been found to be using it unlawfully. This was because it was used “indiscriminately” and with no consideration given to limiting racial or gender bias.

Nevertheless, it is becoming increasingly common with regard to police to use this technologies – current deployments in america include identifying those involved in the January 6 capitol attacks and Black Lives Matter riots inside 2020.

Computer vision is also being used in the new generation of lie detector products, which work by analyzing microscopic movements in the particular eyes plus face of the subject. One such system called EyeDetect offers been utilized voluntarily on suspects, as well as being used by employers in job interviews.

Personal computer vision could soon even be used regarding Minority Report-style pre-emptive recognition of offences before they happen. Research is ongoing into applying machine learning to video data in order to create predictive algorithms that can suggest where crimes are likely in order to take place, based on the build-up associated with people in the environment, traffic, weather, and objects that can be detected within the environment. This could involve information captured through CCTV digital cameras or even drone footage.


Robots are clearly useful in law enforcement due to their ability to go into dangerous situations. While society plus technology probably aren’t quite ready for a general-purpose Robocop, autonomous, mobile units can play an increasingly important part in the number of specialist roles in coming years.

One of the most important is disposing of bombs, suspect packages, and some other suspicious and potentially harmful items. These types of have been around since the 1970s, but the particular latest generation is controllable via VR-style headsets , and also being capable of operating with a far greater degree of autonomy than earlier models. Robots have also been developed that can climb stairs and actually jump over walls in order in order to avoid the need for human operators to manually place them close to the suspected bomb before they can get to function.

Robots are also used simply by security services and legislation enforcement intended for surveillance. The robodog created by Boston Dynamics navigates making use of LIDAR and is equipped with thermal cameras to spot intruders even in the dark. Plans have also been put in place to possibly enable all of them to be applied in hostage negotiation scenarios.

The market for robots in law enforcement is forecast in order to reach $5. 7 billion this year, so we may be sure that many more interesting use cases are usually likely to emerge.

Digital twins

The digital twin is a computer model of any real-world object, system, or process. It is informed by data – thanks in order to IoT technology and sensors – allowing it to accurately simulate whatever this is the twin associated with. In Guangdong, China , the provisional police department has worked along with city authorities to create a real-time map of the town, showing exactly where incidents are happening, along with mapping public interactions, calls, use associated with police resources, and thought or potential threats. Feeds from 10 separate government departments are usually consolidated within the design, giving the police force a complete and current overview through a visual data analytics platform. This means the authorities can simulate plus assess their response to anything from city-wide emergencies in order to the distribution of sources in purchase to deal with day-to-day issues such as street robbery and community nuisance.

Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR).

VR and AR have a lot of exciting potential, which we are already seeing becoming put to use to make training and the particular day-to-day work of law enforcement officers easier. One system developed simply by Axom is definitely designed in order to train police in a range of skills, including de-escalation of potentially violent situations and dealing with members of the general public when there may become complicating factors for example hearing impairment or even Alzheimer’s.

In the US, law enforcement officers in Oklahoma use a different program called Apex Officer , which helps to train to respond to phone calls where mental health is an issue. Other systems use 360-degree video walls that surround the trainee, rather compared to requiring them to wear a headset.

Away from training and the field, AR can be useful as it allows officers to remain aware of what is going on within their vicinity while augmenting their own understanding associated with a situation with overlaid computer graphics. In China, police officers happen to be using AR glasses that may identify suspects and those who are wanted for questioning. The glasses, developed by startup Xloong Technology, allow law enforcement to get into facial and license plate acknowledgement functions within real-time. Whilst privacy concerns mean that this technology is certainly unlikely to be adopted by western police forces any time soon, it’s an interesting glimpse into where the future of regulation enforcement technologies may end up being heading.

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