Technology

Automated License Plate Recognition Technology Evolves

Rebecca Waters         Rapid changes in technology can make it difficult to stay ahead of the game. The above statement is particularly true when it comes to Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) systems which combine cameras, data processors and character recognition software, all of which are constantly evolving. Even law enforcement’s use of the technology continues to evolve. Once used only to recover stolen vehicles and track expired vehicle registrations, ALPR is now used to solve a countless number of offenses….


Cellebrite Unlocks the Apple® iOS 11 Operating System

Bill Siuru, Ph.D., PE Smartphones, such as the Apple iPhone®, the Samsung Galaxy and other similar devices, are found everywhere today and are used by an immense segment of the population around the world. It is estimated that over 90 percent of American adults use cell phones which store detailed information about their lives, relationships and daily habits. Unfortunately, this includes those involved in criminal enterprise, terrorism, drug and human trafficking, and other nefarious activities. Forensic retrieval of the data…


BallisticSearch™ Delivers Faster Ballistics Analysis and More

Bill Siuru, PhD, PE When a gun is fired, it leaves a distinct impression on the ejected shell casing, a   “fingerprint of sorts,” which is unique to that weapon. The marks found on the cartridge case, which are created by the firing pin, breech face and ejector, can be analyzed to trace the spent case back to the exact gun from which it was fired. Upon verification by a professional forensic examiner, this information can be used as evidence to…


Vehicle Pursuit Technology

Bill Siuru, Ph.D., PE Living in the Los Angeles area, hardly a week goes by that I don’t view a high-speed police chase being covered on television. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that about 360 people are killed annually and many more are seriously injured as the result of police pursuits. This number includes suspects, police officers and bystanders alike. Currently, spike strips manually laid across the road by officers are commonly used to terminate a high-speed…


The Use of Textalyzer Technology to Curb Distracted Driving

Hannah R. Heishman; Tod W. Burke, Ph.D.; and Stephen S. Owen, Ph.D. On June 16, 2011, Evan Lieberman, a 19-year-old university student, was a passenger in a car driven by an acquaintance while on the way to a summer job. The vehicle was involved in a head-on collision which resulted in fatal injuries to Lieberman. The driver stated that the accident occurred when he fell asleep while driving. Lieberman’s father subsequently filed a civil lawsuit to acquire the driver’s phone…


Automated License Plate Recognition: An Insider’s Look

Rebecca Waters What are some of the newest, extensive uses of this technology and how can they be best utilized? Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) systems – made up of a camera or cameras, a processor and character recognition software – at their most basic are designed to capture license plate images, transform them into characters and compare the results to a database of license plates which are of interest to law enforcement. We asked six industry experts to fill…


DNA Phenotyping Shows Results

Kathy Marks One of the benefits of this technology is a significant reduction of the suspect pool which can save time, money and manpower. Simply stated, DNA phenotyping predicts the physical appearance of an unknown person from their DNA. This technology helps to generate investigative leads; narrows the suspect list or assists when there are no suspects or database hits; and assists with mass casualty situations and identifying unknown remains. Companies committing resources to developing this technology utilize a number of…


Data Mining in Law Enforcement

Bill Siuru, Ph.D., PE As every investigator knows, intelligence is a key to preventing and solving crimes. Acquiring intelligence often involves time intensive analysis of the thousands of incident reports; crime tips; and other, often seemingly unrelated, pieces of data. Terrorism has compounded the volume of intelligence data to be analyzed and made it even more critical to do it in a timely manner. How do you rapidly and systematically analyze a vast amount of data to produce useful intelligence…


Anatomy of a Ransomware Attack

Dr. Stephenie Slahor The disruption to individual and departmental computer systems via ransomware is presenting new challenges to law enforcement agencies throughout the country. A recent NBC news report disclosed how Eastern European hackers have been exposing law enforcement agencies nationwide to “ransomware” virus attacks – seizing control of various systems and deleting numerous files and/or denying access to records and other information. According to this report, police departments in seven states have experienced these types of attacks over the…


Social Media Tools For Law Enforcement

Dr. StephenieSlahor Smartphones and social media expand our universe. We can connect with others or collect information easier and faster than ever. –Daniel Goleman Social media dominates the lives of many people, especially school-aged youth. Being glued to those screens seems pandemic. Cynthia Hetherington of the Hetherington Group and Bruce Canal, CPP, Orange County, FL, Public Schools, recently addressed the use of social media in their presentation for ASIS International’s annual meeting. “Anything that you put on the Internet, everybody…