Harness the power of centralized collective intelligence

Technology changes quickly. Police investigators and the wider criminal justice system need to continually adapt as criminals develop new ways of committing crime and covering their tracks.

Digital evidence is so commonplace and so widespread that it has become a staple part of any investigation. If sourced and interrogated forensically, it can prove decisive at court.

But fighting crime does not end with collecting and analyzing the relevant digital evidence. Storing and managing that evidence, making it researchable and reusable in other investigations and by other forces, can increase the efficiency of law enforcement organizations and secure convictions.

If agencies are looking to cut costs and streamline operations, as well as increasing cooperation by making their evidence more accessible to officers and staff in neighboring forces, then having a centralized system opens up these possibilities.

With MSAB digital forensic management solution, program and high level managers can easily manage and control all deployed devices and systems, reducing ongoing administration costs by remotely accessing devices from a central control point.

Seamlessly manage your operations from one place

If you are an agency with the best digital forensics lab in the world, you will still probably be overloaded by the volume of devices to examine. This will lead to most cases taking longer to get to court. Which in turn can lead to victims, police forces, lawyers, judges and ultimately politicians and the public losing faith in the agency’s ability.

A greater number of agencies worldwide are recognizing the value of MSAB in empowering frontline officers to conduct their own basic device extractions, thus freeing up the high tech labs to concentrate on higher priority crimes and speeding up investigations. This has led to many also seeing the benefits of having one central management system to administer their ecosystem.

In my experience, there are many benefits to having XEC Director.

  • 1. More for less: Reduce your digital investigation costs

If you have a number of Kiosks, Tablets or XRY Office units spread over a geographical area then these still have to be administered and updated, passwords reset, new users added and/or removed.  An officer needs to spend time servicing every site, or every site needs an admin user – both of which are more costly than having a single overall admin.

At a geographically small site, a customer reported spending approximately £35k (an officer’s salary) per year just to maintain their system prior to the XEC installation. Once XEC was installed the cost and time spent travelling to their Kiosk sites was removed and so XEC paid for itself within a few months. Just imagine the costs of maintaining such a system across a large geographical area such a nationwide or state-wide deployment. Having an officer – and probably more than one officer – spend time maintaining the system just to reset passwords and deliver software updates would be a full time job.

2. Version control from a central point

Many customers report that across their installations they rely on local staff to install updates. However, when the machines were inspected, they found that many different versions of XRY were installed as machines are updated at different times. It is better to have the latest version of XRY across all your machines – the newest versions always have better extraction and decoding properties, and management can expect a standard extraction across the entire agency.

3. Improve technical performance with workflow

The whole premise of MSAB Frontline Forensics is that frontline officers are given the hardware in the form of a Kiosk or tablet, and the software in the form of the workflow and XRY, to allow them conduct extractions with minimal training. These solutions are designed specifically for use by non-technical users and are trusted by law enforcement and governments around the world.

As a senior manager, you need to know if the users performing these extractions are up to the job. Are they failing, or are they excelling and so worthy of career development in Digital Forensics?

With XEC Director the senior managers can monitor user performance – they can keep an eye on how many successful extractions each user has completed – and block those found wanting, flagging them for retraining or further development.

The XEC Admin can move users up or down levels based on the officer meeting certain criteria. This means that different officers can have a different experience of the MSAB Workflow based on their level of competence.

4. Activity tracking and auditing

Most senior officers want to know how many extractions their system is performing per month, quarter or year. They want to know which sites are doing the most extractions, which sites are underutilizing their kit, and which sites are struggling under the pressure and need more kit. They also want to know who their top performers are and who needs assistance.

All of these questions can be answered at the touch of a button using the XEC reporting tool. The standard reports do just that; they allow an Admin to specify a period of time and generate reports based on the whole system, specific sites or individual users.

5. Solve problems with remote assistance

No matter what specific roles a team is tasked with, they will require many different internal assets to accomplish their tasks.

Most team members are spread across several remote locations. If the system is Domain joined then there is also the ability for the central Admin, who generally have more experience in digital forensics, to take over a remote Kiosk or Tablet and run the Workflow themselves from their central lab. This is invaluable when encouraging and assisting frontline officers who may lack experience in this field.

The MSAB digital forensics management solution will speed up your access to data and ensure the integrity and proper management of your digital evidence.

Are you interested to learn more? Contact us


About the author: 

Simon Crawley is a former Police Sergeant in the Metropolitan Police Service, with 10 years of experience in Specialist Operations intelligence gathering using digital forensic tools.  Simon designed, built and managed an effective and efficient MSAB Ecosystem in order to improve data collection, and he is now a senior consultant for MSAB. He also holds a Masters degree in Forensic Computing and Cybercrime Investigations.

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