Feeds

North Wales Police gets unified IP comms

Gives a whole new meaning to 'copper networking'

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

North Wales Police is going all-IP with a new network that'll put unified communications - including videoconferencing and IP telephony - into all 75 of its cop-shops.

Famed for its speeding-obsessed chief constable Richard Brunstrom - dubbed the "Mad Mullah of the Traffic Taleban" by The Sun - the force says it should save £100,000 a year on comms costs. In addition, videoconferencing will cut the time officers spend travelling to meetings - and prevent them speeding on the way there, one presumes.

The new converged network is coming via a managed service deal with Kingston Comms subsidiary Affiniti, which is replacing the existing WAN with point-to-point Ethernet Extension Services (EES) from BT. LANs at each site will enable stations to operate independently should there be a major WAN failure, and will also power the IP phones.

"We're migrating from Mitel to Cisco Call Managers and we have 10Mbit/s into every site, so we can even offer video in remote police stations," said Ian Davies, NWP's Projects and customer services manager. He added that it's only cost £80 a site to add videoconferencing capabilities, in the shape of a decent webcam.

"The force's Western Division is particularly challenging - it can be a two hour trip across Snowdonia if you have to go to court or present a case to the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service), and that's a huge cost in time," he continued.

He said that a videoconferencing pilot project there has reduced the weekly travel overhead by 30 hours, saving the force £34,000 and giving officers more time to spend in the community.

"Officers have to do a lot of work with the CPS prior to a case," he explained. "Or an Inspector may have 13 to 15 very dispersed stations and be able to use videoconferencing to brief the station sergeants each morning.

"Videoconferencing in the past was quite clunky, but this is as simple as ringing a four-digit extension number. The users say it just seems to make a conversation more real - it's deeper, like a virtual meeting."

He said that the force is also increasingly making use of IP desk-phones as terminals - key applications such as its duty and records management systems are XML-based, and along with email, they can be accessed on the phone's screen.

"We've got 2000 computers, they're hugely expensive to run, yet the average user only use five percent of a PC's capacity. They really only use four applications - email, the records management system, duty management and the briefing system."

One thing the network does not include is the force's many speed cameras. Its ANPR (automatic number plate recognition) system has its own comms infrastructure too.

Davies added that while there's no plans yet to put webcams in bobbies' helmets, they have been issued with BlackBerrys to give them mobile access to the records system.

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast
USB-usiness in the front, micro-USB party in the back
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
BOFH: Oh DO tell us what you think. *CLICK*
$%%&amp Oh dear, we've been cut *CLICK* Well hello *CLICK* You're breaking up...
AMD's 'Seattle' 64-bit ARM server chips now sampling, set to launch in late 2014
But they won't appear in SeaMicro Fabric Compute Systems anytime soon
Cisco reps flog Whiptail's Invicta arrays against EMC and Pure
Storage reseller report reveals who's selling what
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.