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ficiency gain has been achieved. For example, the Metropolitan Police now shares the equivalent of 5,500 DVDs’ worth of media (via secure Axon Evidence files) with the CPS every month. At a conservative estimate of five min- utes to create each DVD, that’s a time saving of almost 460 hours. Axon Evidence also includes


smart tools like the AI-based Axon Redaction. Tis automati- cally finds common objects that typically need to be redacted in video footage, such as faces, number plates and screens. It can crunch through the job of redact- ing footage in minutes as opposed to hours when a person searches footage frame-by-frame.


THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING We’re excited about the future of digital technology to help drive further efficiencies in policing. One area we’re working on is the


creation of crime reports. Today, this is a highly manual process involving officers collecting wit- ness accounts and then typing up their notes when they get back to the station. With Axon Records we’re us-


ing voice transcription and AI, to use the footage from officers’ body-worn cameras to automati- cally transcribe statements. We believe that, by using such tech- nology, we may be able to give officers as much as two thirds of their time back (that they cur- rently spend on admin) to spend on the beat. We are also launching the


Axon Body 3 camera. Tis will enable video to be streamed from the field and allow commanders to see the location of their offi- cers on a map. When an incident is ongoing, the incoming chatter from radios can be difficult for operators to efficiently process.


But, with live streaming from incidents, situational awareness is hugely improved as control teams can see what is happening, giving them the insight to take more informed decisions.


DIALOGUE IS NEEDED In this article we have mentioned AI and, of late, there has been discussion of the use of facial recognition by police forces. Such developments can be concerning to citizens and privacy groups. We believe it’s important to


always work with communities and gain their support when it comes to rolling out new technol- ogy. And, as technologies and innovations such as machine learning, Big Data, AI and AR rapidly evolve, we’re taking steps to ensure that technology doesn’t push beyond acceptable boundar- ies for communities. Tat’s why we’ve created the tech industry’s


first AI ethics board, includ- ing academics, focus groups and criminal justice partners to investigate how best to make use of digital advances – without compromising privacy. Our goal is to help police forces


maximise resources, enable of- ficers to spend more time on the street and less on paperwork, while ensuring that technology helps to build, not break, the bonds of trust with communities. Te right software can provide a smooth digital infrastructure and facilitate menial tasks, freeing police officers to do the work they’re best at and no machine will ever be able to do, which is working in the community, building relationships and keep- ing us safe. l


Mike Ashby- Clarke is Country Manager at Axon and a former police officer


FUTURESCOT | SPRING 2020 | 27


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