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Social-enabled policing is the 'next wave'

Sathya Mithra Ashok | Jan. 24, 2014
Digging into his experience with police work and understanding of trends on a global scale, Hong-Eng Koh, senior director and global lead of justice and public safety within Oracle's division focusing on the public sector, makes the case for social-enabled policing (SEP).

This solution is very flexible, and allows you to configure changes, rather than build a whole new workflow or a new data model. This solution helped them save a lot of money.

There are several customers who have adopted this approach with our solution. The key reason is not cost, the key reason is to enable people focus. But because of this architecture you also help them save a lot of money.

This platform can also be a service. For a country like US, police departments can be small, some 10 to 20 officers. They could potentially be offered at a county level and individual city police will subscribe to this as sort of a private cloud.

Q: How does the single platform tie into social media, and the move from being reactive to being proactive?

HEK: The intelligence hub allows us to tap into all data sources. That is the one that will tell you something may be happening. From the police point of view, my response would be to quickly despatch officers, to see whether I can mitigate it before it becomes a major incident.

Unfortunately, if something did happen or crime did occur then data from there would move onto the policing platform for it to initiate the investigation process.

Financial transactions, past criminal record, travel records — all of this are very reliable data. But the moment you look at social media, you have rumours and sarcasm. If you monitor that you are going to get a lot of false positives. And your operational users are not going to like that.

So our intelligence hub actually has four layers of filtering. We use different technologies. We use events recognition, we use ontology based semantic analysis, and master data management. Those layers help us zoom in on the signal within all that noise. We are even able to cut through re-tweeting and re-blogging.

For example, we were able to zoom into a particular tweet where someone put up a photo of a child being abused sexually. We were able to zoom into people with positive emotions after a particular school shooting in the US.

With this solution we are able to zoom in quickly on the date, time and location of the incident, because of the filtering. We are also able to do sentiment analysis, which is important for SEP, and understand whether your community is happy or not happy.

Q: From your perspective, how does the NZ Police fare in their SEP practices and solutions?

HEK: I am pretty impressed by them. I met them a couple of times. People focus is very important with the NZ police. It is good that they are looking at different angles, including a common platform for all these things. It might take some time but they already have determination. That's important.


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