Aug 18, 2014
This report describes the finding of an expert panel convened in September 2015 to discuss how law enforcement can best leverage future communications capabilities anticipated to be fielded over the next 10 to 15 years while mitigating potential risks.
Forthcoming broadband communications technologies could provide dramatically increased capabilities for law enforcement. In September 2015, the RAND Corporation convened an expert panel for the National Institute of Justice to discuss how law enforcement can best leverage future communications capabilities anticipated to be fielded over the next 10 to 15 years while mitigating potential risks. The Broadband Communications Workshop assembled 41 experts on both law enforcement operations and broadband technologies, and collectively identified 68 needs for technology initiatives, including both technical and non-materiel requirements.
The top theme of workshop dealt with supporting the emergence of a future broadband network in which law enforcement users will be able to seamlessly and securely communicate over whatever local point of access is the best fit at any specific location, time, and situation. The second major theme dealt with being able to filter, prioritize, and make sense out of all the new data sent over this network. A common concern was the danger of information overload and how to manage and curate information to make it most useful for various areas of law enforcement, ranging from officers in the field to operations centers and public safety answering points. Specific needs in support of themes included architectural development, developing guidance for agencies on acquiring, managing, and using new technologies, and conducting research and development on a range of technologies related to bringing about the future hybrid networks and information prioritization.