British law enforcement’s success in thwarting a diabolical terrorist plot to blowup numerous passenger aircraft is impressing police departments and agencies throughout the world. In the weeks following their arrests of 24 suspected Jihadists, it will become clearer what worked for agencies such as Scotland Yard and what contributed to their successful apprehension of terrorists.
According to this writer’s contact in British law enforcement, there are several contributing factors, one of which is the ability of different agencies to share critical information in a timely manner.
In the aftermath of terrorist bombings in London in July, police forces across the United Kingdom have gone live on a new computer system that allows them to share a wide range of information on the country’s most dangerous violent terrorists and criminals as well as child predators, helping to stop re-offending and protect the public.
The Violent and Sex Offenders Register or ViSOR was built by the Police
Information Technology Organization in partnership with police and probation professionals.
According to police officials in the UK, the ViSOR system provides online, for the first time, complete and up-to-date information on the country’s most dangerous offenders. It will help to reduce re-offending, protect the public and save police time.
Hours of police officers’ time — that would have been spent retrieving information on offenders from around the country — is already being saved. ViSOR is a big step forward for public protection. The introduction of ViSOR means that, for example, intelligence entered by a probation officer in the north of the country will become immediately searchable by a police officer in the south.
The database includes a photographic library of the offender over time, including distinguishing marks and tattoos, which will make it harder for an individual to change appearance and re-emerge undetected in another part of the country. Its search and retrieval capabilities will also make it a powerful tool in solving major crimes such as abductions, assaults and murders.
ViSOR will cut bureaucracy for police and probation officers and is a valuable addition to the resources available to all those who work in public protection, according to police commanders.
“ViSOR’s rollout to the police service is a significant development in the management of violent and sex offenders. From the moment that Lancashire Constabulary came forward with this business idea and a prototype system, we have involved police and probation professionals in the design and development of the final ViSOR system. That is why ViSOR fits their needs and the system will continue to develop and grow with their input,” claims an official from PITO.
Liz Hill, Senior Responsible Owner for ViSOR in the National Offender Management Service (NOMS) said,”NOMS sees ViSOR as an important tool to support the work of Prison and Probation staff, who manage some of the most serious offenders.”
“For the first time, staff in the Police, the Probation Service, and the Prison service will be able to share intelligence and risk assessment information instantly via a common national database. As a result, offenders will be monitored and managed more effectively, and the public will be better protected,” she added.
The VISOR system was asked for by the police and probation officers managing sex
offenders; it was created for them and primarily by them with the expertise of PITO and police IT professionals. It provides the police service in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland an ability to gather, use and pass information and intelligence which did not exist.
Many consider it is a major advance in their ability to manage dangerous people and the
combined efforts of police and probation will be greatly enhanced by it.
”’Jim Kouri, CPP, is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he’s a staff writer for the New Media Alliance (thenma.org). He’s former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed “Crack City” by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He’s also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He’s a news writer for TheConservativeVoice.Com. He’s also a columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he’s syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. He’s appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com. Kouri’s own Web site is located at”’ http://jimkouri.us
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