Articles about home office

Skimming cash off UK police budget for tech projects probably not the best idea, say MPs

Slicing police funding to inject cash into national programmes – a big chunk of which is funnelled into tech – might not be an effective use of public cash, and some projects face a cliff edge when funding runs out. Or so say MPs in the latest report (PDF) on the state of police funding: the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) …
Rebecca Hill, 9 Nov 2018
Metropolitan police image via Shutterstock

Concerns over cops' crap computer kit: UK MPs call for cash, capacity, command

Cops' investment in and adoption of technology is "a complete and utter mess", MPs have said in a scathing report on the parlous state of UK policing. The House of Commons Home Affairs Committee pulled no punches in its latest report, warning of "dire consequences" if Whitehall doesn't boost funding and address the "complete …
Rebecca Hill, 31 Oct 2018
London, UK - March, 2018. Police officers patrolling Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus in central London.  Pic Paolo Paradiso / Shutterstock.com

Civil rights group Liberty walks out on British cops' database consultation

The UK Home Office's alleged indifference towards civil rights groups' concerns over the creation of a mammoth policing database has caused Liberty to ditch the government-run consultation group on the project. The Home Office is planning to replace the creaky Police National Computer (PNC) and Police National Database (PND) …
Rebecca Hill, 2 Oct 2018
Funnel of cash. Credit: via SXC – http://www.sxc.hu/profile/Leonardini

Home Office opens AWS cash firehose a little wider with police IT deal

The Home Office wants to dump all of Britain’s national-level police IT onto Amazon Web Services' public cloud. A contract note on UK.gov’s Digital Marketplace revealed that the Home Office wants a "partner" to migrate coppers' computing "from a traditional on-premise data centre to Amazon Web Services". “The software and …
Gareth Corfield, 17 Aug 2018
weeping techie with crumpled coffee cups

Home Office seeks Brexit tech boss – but doesn't splash the cash

The reality of the mammoth task facing the Home Office in preparing for Brexit appears to have sunk in – the department is seeking a technology lead for the UK’s exit from the European Union. They will be in charge of overseeing the EU Exit programme, which the Home Office described as "a layer of IT-enabled change that sits …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Aug 2018
A graphic illustrating biometrics

UK.gov's long-awaited, lightweight biometrics strategy fails to impress

Analysis The UK government's lightweight biometrics strategy has failed to make any serious policy recommendations – and instead reiterated a series of already announced promises and promising further consultation on governance. The long-awaited strategy – first promised in 2012 – landed at 4pm on Thursday with a rather light thud, …
Rebecca Hill, 29 Jun 2018
Ambulance

UK Home Office sheds 70 staff on delayed 4G upgrade to Emergency Services Network

The Home Office's massive project to replace the UK's radio infrastructure with a 4G network has shed 70 staffers and plans to expunge another 130, officials have said. In a tense evidence session in front of Parliament's influential Public Accounts Committee, Permanent Secretary at the Home Office Philip Rutnam and the civil …
Rebecca Hill, 28 Jun 2018
A hose leaking water

Asylum seeker spreadsheet data blurt: UK Home Office loses appeal to limit claimants

The British Home Office's bid to reduce the number of potential claimants from a 2013 data breach that exposed the personal details of thousands of asylum seekers has been knocked back by the Court of Appeal. Rather than simply publishing overall statistics on the family returns process – the system by which children who have …
Rebecca Hill, 18 Jun 2018

UK Home Office's £885m crim records digi effort: A 'masterclass in incompetence'

The UK government's digitization of its Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) – a system for checking criminal records – is "a masterclass in incompetence," according to a damning report by the government's spending watchdog. In a dossier published today, Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said the modernisation …
Kat Hall, 25 May 2018
UK passport control photo via Shutterstock

UK Home Office hands Sopra Steria £91m digital visa contract

The Home Office has awarded Sopra Steria a £91m contract to develop a digital visa and immigration service in the UK. The French outsourcer will take on the contract in October 2018 – the latest in a raft of recently signed deals intended to cope with processing immigration status post-Brexit, particularly for the 3 million EU …
Kat Hall, 18 May 2018
(An allegedly) Bad dog's police mug shot...

Cutting custody snaps too costly for cash-strapped cops – UK.gov

The UK government has admitted it can only delete custody images from its massive database through a complex manual process, and that it would cost too much to weed out all the images of innocent people by hand. The custody image database now holds around 21 million shots of faces and identifying features like scars or tattoos …
Rebecca Hill, 19 Apr 2018
Amber Rudd

British government to ink deal for yet another immigration database

Exclusive The UK Home Office will sign a deal with Accenture to replace its clunky 1990s-era immigration and asylum applications system – having previously written off £347m in its last attempted overhaul. The department confirmed procurements have been awarded to Accenture and PA Consulting as "caseworking delivery partners" to replace …
Kat Hall, 12 Apr 2018
angry phone user

Accenture, Capgemini, Deloitte creating app to register 3m EU nationals living in Brexit Britain

The Home Office has inked a deal with a coterie of consultancies and system integrators to create a digital app intended to register the three million EU citizens in the UK post-Brexit. The department confirmed to The Register that Accenture, BJSS, Capgemini, Deloitte Digital, PA Consulting and Worldreach had been signed up to …
Kat Hall, 9 Apr 2018
UK passport control photo via Shutterstock

Details of 600,000 foreign visitors to UK go up in smoke thanks to shonky border database

The details of 600,000 foreign visitors have slipped through the cracks of the Home Office's database thanks to its "shambolic" exit checks system. A report (PDF) by the chief inspector of borders and immigration, David Bolt, examined the department's Initial Status Analysis (ISA) system database and how ISA-produced data had …
Kat Hall, 29 Mar 2018

Yes, Emergency Service Network will be late and cost more - UK perm sec

The UK Home Office’s Emergency Services Network that is intended to replace the country's national radio infrastructure with a 4G network is running overtime and budget, politicians were told today. Amber Rudd, Home Office chief was questioned alongside Permanent secretary Philip Rutnam, on the progress of department's largest …
Kat Hall, 28 Mar 2018
ISIS fighters

Despite the headlines, Rudd's online terror takedown tool is only part of the solution

Analysis The UK government launched its swish new tool to fight online extremist content to much fanfare this week – leading news bulletins and generating reams of coverage. But it also faced a whole host of criticism and concern. Underneath the claims made by Home Secretary Amber Rudd yesterday, there are many questions yet to be …
Rebecca Hill, 14 Feb 2018
Amber Rudd

UK Home Sec Amber Rudd unveils extremism blocking tool

UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd has announced a tool that purports to detect and block jihadist content online, and tech companies may end up being legally required to use it. London-based firm ASI Data Science was handed £600,000 by government to develop the unnamed algorithm, which uses machine learning to analyse Daesh …
Kat Hall, 13 Feb 2018
Game of Thrones

UK Home Office grilled over biometrics, being clingy with folks' mugshots

Brit Home Office bods have denied that retaining millions of custody images of people who were never charged falls foul of case law, while asserting that automatic deletion is not technically possible. In an intense evidence session with MPs this morning, Home Office minister Susan Williams and the department's director of …
Rebecca Hill, 6 Feb 2018

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