AWS Government, Education, & Nonprofits Blog

The Future of Policing: BJA Smart Suite Summit Recap

If a police officer has three eye witnesses to an incident, it’s also likely that there are three camera phones recording it. The rise of social media, 24/7 media coverage, and mobile phones with video cameras has sparked growing interest in policing activities. But how are police departments responding?

Many recognize the need to not just acknowledge this increased exposure, but also to get ahead of it. Police departments are leading efforts to create greater transparency into their work as a way to build stronger communities. Technology can help get us to this collaborative future state through body-worn cameras, video redaction, crime forecasting, digital evidence management, and more.

Teresa Carlson, VP of Worldwide Public Sector at AWS, recently spoke at the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) Smart Suite Summit. The goal of the summit was to increase collaboration among BJA Smart Suite grantees, researchers, national experts, federal representatives, and thought leaders to discuss and promote data-informed criminal justice projects and programs. At AWS, we understand that being able to record, transmit, store, redact, and share data is no easy task. Body cameras and digital evidence management solutions are the fastest growing technologies in the Justice and Public Safety space. According to a recent survey sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security, 94.5 percent of law enforcement agencies had either implemented or were fully committed to implementing body cameras. And empirical research has shown that body cameras significantly reduce use of force incidents and citizen complaints, helping to improve public trust.

“Our focus is on securing your IT infrastructure, so you can focus on what matters most—protecting your citizens. To consistently meet the needs of our customers, we start with what they need and work backwards. Building the foundation with the AWS infrastructure, our customers and APN partners are able to meet any use case, including crime forecasting, secure messaging and mass alerts, e-citation, and more,” said Teresa.

Cloud technology providers and our many partners enable law enforcement to collect, securely store, and analyze body camera and other video data, from dash cameras to surveillance cameras to citizen-generated video. We recognize that when law enforcement agencies place data in the cloud, they put an absolute priority on secure access to information, wherever and whenever it is needed. And we have an isolated AWS region designed to host sensitive data and regulated workloads in the cloud that is managed by US persons only—AWS GovCloud (US).

In the US, we comply with the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division (CJIS) standard. These CJIS standards mean that law enforcement organizations can take advantage of the security, agility, and scalability of the cloud while complying with FBI standards for the cloud-based storage and processing of sensitive criminal justice information (CJI). We’re working to execute agreements with many other law enforcement customers, and are committed to maintaining a comprehensive security program consistent with federal and state laws, regulations, standards, and the requirements of the FBI CJIS Security Policy. We currently have CJIS agreements with many states, see recent announcements with California, Colorado, Minnesota, and Oregon. And while many of the security and compliance standards we meet were developed for the US, we are actually seeing their adoption globally.

With the rapid evolution of technology, the explosion of data sharing through social media and other means, and with the transformative innovation of people like you, this space is changing faster than any of us could have anticipated.  From open data initiatives to machine learning, there is so much possibility in the cloud. Learn more about our work supporting the justice and public safety community here and come see us at IACP in October.