Australian Crime Commission to eliminate intelligence silos

The Australian Crime Commission plans to build a national criminal intelligence system off the back of completing its four-year Fusion capability project in an aim to further enhance intelligence collaboration between Australia law-enforcement agencies.

The Australian Crime Commission (ACC) plans to build a national criminal intelligence system that will further eliminate existing silos between Australia's law-enforcement agencies and bodies.

Speaking at the 2014 Big Data Summit in Sydney, Maria Milosavljevic, ACC chief information officer, said the biggest risk and challenge that all law-enforcement agencies currently face is not being able to find appropriate information within existing databases, and not being able to do so in a collaborative way.

"We're going to be doing even more connectivity on input of more data, more efficient systems, more automated risk assessments and analytics," she said.

The national criminal intelligence system is expected to facilitate the flow of information across all law enforcements, regardless of whether they are state or national agencies. At the same time, it's expected to improve existing partnerships with the ACC's law-enforcement partners, academia, and industry in a way that it will bring a more collaborative approach to intelligence analysis.

The system is expected to also reduce information and workload duplication, so that if intelligence analysts are working on the same problem, they will be able to work together and "join the community together", and ensure the appropriate information is pushed to them.

"It will facilitate a culture of connectivity and collaboration across criminal intelligence," Milosavljevic said.

While still in the early stages of planning, the national criminal intelligence system is expected to also give the ACC feedback on the tasks that its intelligence analysts are working on.

"We're going to turn [our operations] into a cycle; up until now, it has been linear. We're starting to have feedback to start to measure what is the result of what we do, what is the impact, what is the value of the information, who is it valuable for, and why," Milosavljevic said.

Milosavljevic revealed that building the national criminal intelligence system will be a lengthy process and will happen incrementally, but it will also be dependent on the amount of government funding the ACC receives.

The idea for the national criminal intelligence system comes off the back of the ACC completing its AU$14.5 million four-year-long Fusion project mid this year.

The Fusion capability brings more than 20 partner agencies together to monitor the "highest risks to criminality and to identify previously unknown targets and emerging risks". It also addressed previous issues that the ACC faced, including manual cleansing of data and information duplication.

Since the implementation of Fusion, the ACC has managed to produce 4,460 intelligence products, with 200 new entities being discovered; data ingestion has improved by 90 percent; full test search has improved by 98 percent; geocoding has improved by 80 percent; and other analysis tasks have improved from 50 percent to 90 percent.

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