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A Unified Solution for Homeland Security

A Unified Solution for Homeland Security - May, 2003

Efficiently and effectively sharing information has been identified as a key challenge in homeland security efforts to safeguard our country and our communities. Over a year ago, President Bush clearly stated the pressing need for effective solutions:

"We've got to upgrade our communications, not only between the federal government and the state government, but between state governments and local communities, and between counties and local jurisdictions. We've got to be able to talk to each other better, so that there's real time communications, so that we can share information in a crisis. Information-sharing will help save lives."(University of Pittsburg, February 2002)

The virtual certainty of future terror attacks, including catastrophic scenarios, dictates that all authorities - law enforcement, homeland security, health, and emergency response at the federal, state, county, and local levels - be able to quickly develop visual information and share critical alerts with each other and with any or all segments of the public. A robust and flexible solution is needed that can prepare authorities to prevent further attacks and respond to any eventuality.

Three companies have joined together on one of the vital components in responding to this challenge - development of a national emergency alert and tracking system that will prevent and respond to terrorist threats by getting the right information to the right agency at the right time.

This strategic partnership involves SocialTech, IQ Biometrix Inc., and Intergraph Solutions Group. SocialTech is a non-profit organization that has worked with U.S. law enforcement agencies since 1995 to develop and implement tools to share investigative information. A leading security solutions company, IQ Biometrix has a proven track record in delivering security products in more than 5,000 police agencies worldwide. Intergraph Solutions Group, a professional services and solutions company, boasts a strong 33-year history in the graphics and video industry.

The result of the partnership is the National Terrorist Alert and Tracking System, built on SocialTech TRAK II, Biometrix FACES LETM, and Intergraph Video Analyst System. TRAK II is a powerful system that allows users to capture images and distribute alerts over a secure communications network to a customizable, preloaded list of agency contacts. The FACES LE composite image solution includes software and training to enable law enforcement personnel to quickly and effectively create and distribute photo-quality suspect images. Video Analyst System is a powerful video enhancement workstation with tools to capture, enhance, analyze, and edit nearly any type of video.

The National Terrorist Alert and Tracking System:

  • Gives authorities, including police, government, military, health, and emergency response agencies, a rapid, secure system to share protected and critical information with each other and to distribute security and safety information to the public

  • Can be used in any emergency situation, from homeland security threats to industrial or natural disasters to coordinated law enforcement measures, such as child abductions or wanted persons cases

  • Includes the ability to transmit high-resolution images - including surveillance video and suspect composite evidence

The integrated package provides the needed array of tools to maximize public safety - the ability to enhance images, identify suspects, and communicate alerts. The National Terrorist Alert and Tracking System can be implemented immediately, effectively, and cost-efficiently. It's built on a foundation of proven, stable, reliable, industry-standard technology that is already installed and being used by more than 1,300 law enforcement agencies in 32 states to distribute investigative information - making it the most widely-used authority-based alert system in the nation.

Examples of potential uses:

  • Terror Alerts: Color images of suspected terrorists are distributed to all airports, bus stations, taxi companies, ports, and train stations on the East Coast. Information about a pending truck bomb plot is distributed to all rental facilities in California.

  • Endangered Child: A Missing Child alert with the child's photo is distributed in the first critical minutes throughout the community to businesses, transportation centers, schools, citizens, etc. When the case is later evaluated to be an Amber Alert case, color images are included in the media.

  • Community Health and Safety: The County Health Department sends alerts about West Nile Virus to physicians. An alert about a meningitis outbreak is distributed to affected schools and parents.

A key advantage of the solution is its scaleable architecture. Depending on the assessment of risk and need-to-know, it can target 5 recipients or 5,000. And it's sustainable. It can respond to immediate and critical needs and applications, and can be extended to respond to future threats and incorporate new and emerging technologies.

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