) Morpho, a developer of biometric solutions, has announced that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) is the first public safety organization in the U.S. to deploy a statewide fingerprint identification system dedicated to remote rapid identification.
The Rapid ID system from Sagem Morpho enables Florida public safety officers in the field or other remote locations to positively identify sex offenders, probationers, and individuals with Florida criminal records in less than 15 seconds.
Sagem Morpho, developer of the highly accurate Automated Fingerprint Identification Systems (AFIS) for public safety agencies throughout the world, leveraged its high-speed biometric coding and matching technology, commercial off-the-shelf servers and non-proprietary, standards-based software in order to create the stand-alone Rapid ID system for FDLE.
The FDLE Rapid ID was originally mandated by Florida’s Jessica Lunsford Act. The solution was launched in October 2006 and is part of the state’s Integrated Criminal History System, also known as FALCON.
FALCON involves the integration and enhancement of Florida’s Computerized Criminal History and Automated Fingerprint Identification Systems.
“The Rapid ID system has already proven to be of significant value to our partner criminal justice agencies,” said Penny Kincannon, FDLE CIO, in a Tuesday statement.
“We plan to expand this technology statewide to other venues such as patrol vehicles for roadside stops, jails for inmate entry and release, and courtrooms to confirm if DNA already exists on file for a convicted felon.”
According to FDLE, the system could be called upon to support queries from as many as 15,000 edge devices statewide by late 2008. Rapid ID is currently in place in all of the state’s sheriff’s offices and probation offices and is being piloted by the Florida Highway Patrol and the Pinellas County Jail.
“Rapid ID is ground-breaking biometric technology,” said Bernard Gautier, Sagem Morpho President and CEO, in Tuesday’s statement. “Rapid ID differs from AFIS because Rapid ID requires no manual interaction during the fingerprint matching process.”
A typical Rapid ID application involves the use of a small portable device by an officer. This edge biometric scanner is used to obtain digital fingerprint images from an individual. The edge unit transmits the digital print images either wirelessly or through closed network to the Rapid ID system for matching.
If a database match is made, Rapid ID uses an identification number to extract that person’s criminal records from the Florida Criminal Information Center. This information is packaged into an abbreviated format and returned to a screen on the edge device where it can be viewed and read by the public safety official.
Such capability can greatly increase the capabilities of the officers in the field, allowing them to make arrests where necessary and move on when a positive ID is not made. This ability also allows the officer to focus on the task at hand and eliminates the need to return to the precinct office with the individual just to get a fingerprint check.
The demand for such a solution is likely to be considerable as our law enforcement officers find themselves faced with increasing calls every day. Providing them with a way to streamline their process to be more efficient can ease their load and enable them to be more effective.
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