UK police forces select Unisys’ HOLMES to manage criminal investigations

UnisysUnisys Corporation‘s UK subsidiary announced on Nov. 5 that it has been selected by the UK’s Police Service to implement the latest version of the Home Office Large Major Enquiry System (HOLMES) for major criminal investigations and incident management.

HOLMES will be delivered to more than 40 UK police forces via a single browser-based application hosted in a secure Unisys cloud service.

Each police force has signed a separate contract to use the new HOLMES solution, with the new contracts representing the first procurement of a national policing system completed using the UK Government’s G-Cloud procurement framework and the Digital Marketplace (formally CloudStore). The G-Cloud procurement framework provides the public sector with a simplified and lower cost procurement process for approved cloud services.

The latest version of the HOLMES application, based on the Unisys Law Enforcement Applications Framework (U-LEAF) which was globally launched earlier this year, will assist UK police forces to lower the total cost of IT and share intelligence more easily, resulting in more powerful investigation and detection capabilities.

Additionally, HOLMES gives senior officers a real-time view of live operations to facilitate efficient decision making and the effective deployment, or reallocation, of police resources. There is also improved functionality for tasking, alerting, reporting, messaging, analytics and document and records management.

HOLMES new automated data analytics capabilities are designed to help police forces and other agencies collaborate to conduct and successfully close investigations and intelligence activities. The solution helps to reduce manual processes, identify investigative links that were not previously visible and allows users to react rapidly to new information.

U-LEAF also has additional capabilities not deployed in HOLMES that enable police services to support a wider range of investigative challenges, such as the management of individuals in custody and witnesses, crime scene monitoring and surveillance operations and recording high volumes of physical evidence.

Mike Barton, chief constable, Durham Constabulary, said: “The new version of HOLMES will connect UK police forces to provide critical new intelligence sharing functionality that will help us in our efforts to resolve large cases as efficiently as possible. The cost and resourcing benefits we hope to achieve with HOLMES will support our efforts in the upcoming Comprehensive Spending Review and the solution’s improved functionality will help us to meet the Government Information and Communications Technology strategy of reducing the number of police systems. Unisys has been a trusted partner of UK policing for many years and this new version of HOLMES is the result of a deep understanding of the requirements needed to perform our role.”

The existing HOLMES solution was developed by Unisys with UK police forces in 2001 and has since been used to manage major investigations, including high profile cases such as the Soham murders in 2002, the pursuit of Raoul Moat in 2010, the identification of UK citizens caught in the Japanese tsunami in 2011 and the Twin Towers terrorist attacks in 2001.

Nick Fraser, managing director, Unisys UK, said, “Unisys has dedicated many years to developing solutions in conjunction with the UK police service, and we are proud to say that we support UK policing with mission-critical applications. The latest version of HOLMES, based on our modern U-LEAF platform, is the result of Unisys’ extensive experience in delivering more efficient and cost-effective policing capabilities, coupled with the ability to look at crimes or individuals in a way previously not possible.”

U-LEAF can be configured to work across jurisdictions and geographies so resource-challenged police departments, intelligence services, and law enforcement personnel can manage crime and terror threats in any country. U-LEAF gives investigators a flexible technology tool to meet challenges in policing, national security, immigration and citizenship enforcement, military and finance. That flexibility allows for easy system configuration as threats, crime patterns, legislation or public expectations change.”