11/05/2011

Firms scramble to cash in on police demand for data-sifting programs

From big defense contractors to smaller, specialized start-ups, companies are cashing in on healthy demand for software

By Jennifer Valentino-Devries
Wall Street Journal

Law-enforcement and intelligence agencies are increasingly relying on information from the Web and electronic records to help solve crimes and evaluate threats, producing a stream of new business for companies that can help them crunch the data.

From big defense contractors to smaller, specialized start-ups, companies are cashing in on healthy demand for software and other technology that can sort through and analyze mountains of government and private-sector data to help track down criminals or look for signs of terrorist activity.

Police, for example, might use video-analysis software to spot a suspicious package in a crowded train station and correlate it to the license plates on a nearby car to find a potential suspect.

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