3 Hot Trends in Public Safety This Summer


Summer is almost here and the heat will soon be here with it. If you are like me, you can’t wait for it to get hot. The summer brings the lake, time with the kids and sunny beaches. Before you shutdown your computer and head outside let’s take some time to look ahead and see what trends are HOT this summer in Public Safety.

  1. Body camera storage costs can be too HOT to handle

…cost of 300 body cameras to equal $18,000/day

You can not turn on the news or read a paper without seeing a story about another police department deploying a body camera pilot. Even though many police departments are in the middle of pilots, the vast majority of cities have not fully deployed body cameras. As more and more departments deploy cameras we are seeing a lot of new concerns over the long term cost of body cameras. West Milford is just one example where the city determined that the cost of body cameras were just too high. One department determined that the cost of 300 body cameras to equal $18,000/day. This cost is forever in the cloud only model! Departments have to consider alternatives to the cloud only storage approach for body cameras. Cloud is not the only option for body cameras. Many departments are deploying storage on premises for almost ½ the cost of the cloud.

  1. Police Departments want a better way to store ALL their evidence video

In almost every meeting I sit in with customers, I hear that departments want a solution for ALL their evidence video and not just their body camera footage. Today’ police departments have to store video from many different end-points. It is very costly and complicated to manage multiple evidence storage platforms. Some departments are managing 9 or more different storage platforms for their evidence. This disconnected approach adds costs, complications and does not allow agencies to fully unlock the value of all their evidence data. Disparate systems cause frustration with the users of the evidence video. It is hard to find, hard to secure, hard to track, and even harder to manage the evidence lifecycle.

  1. Enterprise Evidence Management is KEY

It is one thing to capture the evidence. It is a whole other thing to manage the evidence and the evidence lifecycle. So many departments are focused on getting the right cameras and often forget that the infrastructure to support the new cameras will far outpace the cost of the initial camera purchase. Evidence has is not all equal. Some evidence can be deleted in 30 days, other evidence has to be kept for 1 year, 5 years, 10 years or even forever in some cases. How does a department keep all this straight? What do you do when a case is appealed or dismissed? How do you ensure your evidence is where it is supposed to be and not there when it is supposed to be deleted? These are the really hard questions that require an enterprise approach to evidence. Evidence has to be available, secure, and managed properly or there is a high chance that critical evidence could be lost when needed most.

I will dive deeper into each of these trends over the next couple weeks. Please let me know what you think and if I should add any trends to the discussion.

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Ken Mills

About the Author: Ken Mills

A leader in the Video Surveillance industry for over 15 years, Ken Mills is the General Manager & Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Dell EMC for the Surveillance and Reconnaissance business, and is regarded as one of the company’s top surveillance and public safety experts. Ken has been instrumental in establishing and growing this business and in the development and marketing of Dell EMC Surveillance solutions that greatly improve the performance, reliability, and manageability of enterprise surveillance infrastructure systems. After serving in the Navy as a nuclear engineer, Ken spent five years as a partner in one of the largest contract field sales organizations in the United States. He subsequently became a founding member of the Cisco Systems incubation organization, Emerging Technologies, whose goal was to identify the next billion-dollar businesses for Cisco. Ken quickly became a leader at Cisco and spent almost 8 years building a thriving business for Cisco focused on Surveillance, Access Control, and Emergency Response. Ken joined Dell EMC in 2013 to help the company build what has become a thriving business around Surveillance. He is responsible for developing the concept of a “Public Safety Data Lake,” where agencies can leverage enterprise data management solutions to address the growing demand for storage and security, and has published numerous articles about public safety technology trends. Ken is a founding member of the Cyber Security Advisory Board for the Security Industry Association and is on the Board of Directors for the Security Industry Association. Ken is an Advisory Board Member to the National Spectator Sports Safety and Security organization and is also Fellow with United States State Department. He is uniquely qualified to discuss the Dell EMC value proposition for Surveillance.