Officers in Greater Glasgow are now using mobile devices to work remotely

Francesca Di Fazio
Writer

Aside from making police work more efficient, the newly supplied technology is expected to put more officers on the streets.

Officers in Greater Glasgow are now using mobile devices as part of their police equipment to allow them to spend more time within communities.

The idea is that officers can now connect to police systems and carry out remotely tasks that would normally require their presence at the police station, such as recording incidents, conducting checks, or filing crime reports. The digital notebook software Pronto also allows them to collect statements directly on the devices by using the electronic signatures of victims and witnesses.

Aside from making police work more efficient, the newly supplied technology is expected to put more officers on the streets.

“Officers are able to spend more time on patrol as well as increasing their visibility, engagement and accessibility to members of the public,” said Chief Superintendent Hazel Hendren, who serves as divisional commander for Greater Glasgow.

The Greater Glasgow Police Division is not the first to employ the mobile devices. The rollout started this summer in Tayside, followed by North East Scotland and the Highlands and Islands. The Mobile Working Project, partially funded by the Scottish Government, is worth £21m and is expected to supply mobile devices to around 10,000 Scottish officers by spring 2020. Its implementation is part of the wider framework of the Serving a Changing Scotland (2026) Strategy, issued by the Scottish Police Authority (SPA) with the aim of developing sustainable and effective solutions for the future of policing.

Several companies are involved in the project. The role of main contractor was secured by EE, which will supply Police Scotland with mobile network services for three years. The devices come from Samsung, while the Pronto software and Mobile Device Management service are provided by Motorola and Blackberry respectively.

Assistant Chief Constable Malcolm Graham defined the collaboration between Police Scotland and its technology suppliers as “a significant investment for the future of policing in Scotland.”