Home Office asks CGI to ‘disaggregate’ police database supplier information
The Home Office has moved to take direct control over relationships with hardware and software developers that contribute to the UK’s Police National Database.
The department announced on 6 June that it had extended IT firm CGI’s contract to build and deliver the database by a further three years.
The company has been operating the PND, which processes more than 3 billion searchable records and has more than 4 million searches each year, since 2009.
Under the new contract, CGI has been asked to “disaggregate” the relationships with other suppliers involved in PND delivery. This will allow the Home Office to directly manage relationships with those providers, the CGI said in a statement.
In addition, the PND will be transitioned to the Crown Hosting Service, which is jointly provided by the Cabinet Office and Ark Data Centres and aims to increase value and transparency of data centre hosting in the public sector.
The database was created following the 2004 inquiry into the Soham murders to allow sharing of intelligence across all police forces in the UK.
In recent years the Home Office has pushed to improve the PND, which has included the introduction of digital-focused searches, automatic alerts and repeat searches and big data visualisation technologies.
“The PND is more than an IT system, it is a weapon in the fight against crime and terrorism,” said Steve Thorn, senior vice president for the UK public sector at CGI.
“The PND takes the existing information and makes it more accessible, ensuring officers can bring together disparate pieces of information into a meaningful pattern.”
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