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NCJ Number: 50497 Find in a Library
Title: ROLE OF COMPUTERS IN POLICE ADMINISTRATION (FROM POLICE IN AUSTRALIA - DEVELOPMENT, FUNCTIONS AND PROCEDURES, 1977, BY KERRY L MILTE AND THOMAS A WEBER - SEE NCJ-50485)
Author(s): P E LAMBERT
Corporate Author: Butterworth Pty Ltd
Australia
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 11
Sponsoring Agency: Butterworth Pty Ltd
Chatswood 2067, Australia
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: THE USE OF COMPUTERS IN AGENCY-LEVEL INFORMATION AND MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS AND IN STATE AND NATIONAL CRIMINAL RECORD SYSTEMS IS DISCUSSED, AND COMPUTER EQUIPMENT USED BY POLICE IS DESCRIBED.
Abstract: ALTHOUGH THE EXTENSIVE USE OF COMPUTERS IN POLICE WORK BEGAN IN THE UNITED STATES IN THE 1960'S, IT WAS THE AVAILABILITY OF ON-LINE TECHNIQUES (SYSTEMS IN WHICH MANY USERS HAVE ACCESS TO THE COMPUTER AT THE SAME TIME, THROUGH TERMINALS) THAT PROMOTED THE RAPID DEVELOPMENT OF POLICE INFORMATION SYSTEMS IN THE LATE 1960'S AND EARLY 1970'S, BOTH IN THE UNITED STATES AND IN EUROPE. BATCH PROCESSING (SINGLE-USER ACCESS, USUALLY REQUIRING THAT WORK BE SUBMITTED TO A CENTRAL LOCATION) STILL FINDS APPLICATIONS IN SUCH AREAS AS MANAGEMENT REPORTS, CRIME STATISTICS, AND RESOURCE ALLOCATION. POLICE INFORMATION SYSTEMS ARE THOSE THAT PROVIDE INFORMATION TO POLICE OFFICERS IN THE FIELD. THESE SYSTEMS INCLUDE HOT CHECKS (STOLEN VEHICLES, WANTED PERSONS, DRIVERS' LICENSES, CAR OWNERSHIP, STOLEN PROPERTY, FIREARMS LICENSES), IN WHICH THE OFFICER'S NEED FOR INFORMATION IS URGENT; AND INVESTIGATION SYSTEMS (CRIMINAL NAMES AND HISTORIES, CRIME PATTERNS, FINGERPRINTS, MODUS OPERANDI, PERSONAL DESCRIPTION), USED BY DETECTIVES AND SUPPORT PERSONNEL TO INVESTIGATE CRIMES AND PROSECUTE OFFENDERS. MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS SERVE BOTH ADMINISTRATIVE FUNCTIONS (PERSONNEL RECORDS, PAYROLL, ACCOUNTS, PROCESSING OF TRAFFIC AND PARKING VIOLATIONS) AND RESOURCE ALLOCATION FUNCTIONS (COMMAND AND CONTROL, WORKLOAD, CRIME STATISTICS, MESSAGE SWITCHING). APPROACHES TO SHARING INFORMATION AMONG STATES VARY, THE LEAST SOPHISTICATED METHOD BEING ONE IN WHICH EACH STATE MAINTAINS ITS OWN RECORD SYSTEM, INCLUDING RECORDS FROM OTHER STATES ONLY WHEN THE SERIOUSNESS OF THE SITUATION WARRANTS THE EFFORT. THIS SYSTEM IS RELATIVELY INEFFICIENT BUT IS THE ONE IN USE IN AUSTRALIA. THE MOST EFFICIENT APPROACH IS A NATIONAL INDEX, WHICH CONTAINS BASIC INFORMATION TOGETHER WITH IDENTIFICATION OF THE STATE HOLDING DETAILED INFORMATION. THE EQUIPMENT REQUIREMENTS OF POLICE INFORMATION SYSTEMS VARY ACCORDING TO THE SIZE AND NATURE OF THE SYSTEM. SYSTEMS HANDLING LARGE VOLUMES OF TRANSACTIONS OFTEN REQUIRE BOTH A 'FRONT-END' COMPUTER (USUALLY A MINICOMPUTER) TO CONTROL USER TERMINALS AND A MAIN COMPUTER, WHICH CARRIES OUT ACCESSING OF RECORDS. TERMINALS IN POLICE AGENCIES USUALLY PROVIDE A VISUAL DISPLAY AND HAVE A PRINTER FOR HARD COPIES OF MESSAGES. IT IS IMPORTANT THAT POLICE BE EDUCATED IN THE USE OF COMPUTERS AND THAT POLICE BE INVOLVED IN THE DESIGN OF INFORMATION SYSTEMS. (LKM)
Index Term(s): Computer hardware systems; Computerized criminal histories; Computers; Management Information Systems; Police equipment; Police information systems
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50497

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