Analysis added to state data network

Regional Information Sharing System

State and local law enforcement officers have a new tool that will let them to make connections between pieces of data shared through the national Regional Information Sharing System network, officials said today.

RISSnet links the databases in the six RISS centers, which are partially funded by the federal Justice Department. Law enforcement employees have been able to perform searches on all of those databases for some time, but with the addition of a visualization solution from i2 Inc., each search would also have a link analysis chart with connecting matches that the official might not have considered.

Providing this capability to the front-line law enforcement officers will be a big step forward for getting the most out of the data within the separate databases, said Karen Aumond, assistant director of the Western States Information Network (WISN), one of the six regional centers. This type of linking can be done now, but it requires a request to be put in and a human to perform the analysis, which takes time, she said.

"The idea of visualizing data has been appealing for some time, but the technology, frankly, hasn't been there to support it," Aumond said.

A search can be performed on the entire network, or just a designated set of databases. Once the software generates the link analysis chart, a user can download it for further analysis, look at the context of the data, start new searches based on a link or use the color-coded chart to get in touch with the center that provided the data.

The software also searches through databases that are not RISS databases but are on RISSnet, providing another set of source intelligence, Aumond said.

So far, the i2 solution has been tested extensively and deployed to the staff within two of the RISS centers. It will be rolled out further within those centers over the next few months, and then to the other four centers, Aumond said.

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