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Features

Wireless Communication

Keep the lines of communication open without all those pesky wires.

April 01, 2002  |  by - Also by this author

Lifesaving Software / Hardware

It might seem a bit of an overstatement, but think about it. You need more than a radio these days. Dispatch is great for giving you all the details you need when you're out on patrol. But they have other things to do, like answering 911 calls and directing you and other officers to crime scenes.
Running a license plate number, while important, is probably not the most pressing item on a dispatcher's list of things to do.

So to keep those ever-important phone lines to dispatch clear for the really important stuff, there's a vast array of solutions to choose from to get that DMV information and more by going straight to the source; and to do it securely and effectively.

Aether Systems and FieldSoft, Inc., now have an agreement that allows Aether PacketCluster mobile data applications to work with FieldSoft's PDonScene incident command and emergency responder accountability software. Now you'll know right away, no matter where you are, the location of other officers.


Aether Systems’ PacketCluster gives you access to DMV files and other critical data.

And it works no matter what dispatch system is installed. The integration of these two products allows computer-aided dispatch (CAD) information-such as incident location, type, assigned units, and crew members-to be passed through Aether PacketCluster Patrol to PDonScene on the mobile computer. This can tell you not only who is on the scene but the last known locations of all responders so you can react immediately and effectively to an "officer down" radio transmission. This can definitely save lives.

To make sure your time is optimized, you need all the newest applications and upgrades as quickly and easily as possible. Aether Systems' Mobile Automation can reduce the cost of deploying software to mobile government workers and allow immediate access to critical applications and time-sensitive information. This improves systems management, giving you more time to devote to the job at hand. Systemwide software updates and file exchanges can be done remotely, updating the system in every car in the agency without interrupting use of the systems in the field.

Sharing is great, but it's probably best kept within the agency or among the need-to-know crowd. Security is an important issue, especially for SWAT and special ops. Never fear. There's wireless equipment out there to keep department information safe.

Ecutel, Inc.'s Viatores offers an alternative to VPNs (Virtual Private Networks). Both were created to provide information security by preventing hackers from decoding encrypted information. Viatores is not only secure, but allows mobility.

While VPNs only work if a user stays within 100 feet of a single WLAN port, Viatores technology allows roaming from WLAN connection to LANs to wireless phone networks.

In addition, the SafeXcel-241 PCI card is an optional feature that provides cryptography throughput for operations such as Triple-DES encryption, the highest level of encryption the government uses for unclassified documents. It's never been broken.

Open Software Solutions, Inc., (OSSI) offers a Visual Mobile application that, when combined with OSSI's Mobile Computing Terminal (MCT), allows officers to make local, state, and national warrant checks and DMV inquiries from the car, and gives them access to mugshots and records management information. In addition, mapping capabilities and the ability to view the status and locations of other units keeps officers on top of everything. Talk about a mobile office.


Open Software Solutions, Inc., offers a complete system of software so you almost don’t have to leave your mobile office.

OSSI's Mobile Field Reporting software even allows officers to complete their reports and submit them for supervisory review while still on the beat. No more typing up reports after hours at the station. OSSI's wireless capabilities make many mundane but important tasks faster and simpler by putting it all at your fingertips.

Sierra Wireless' MP200 wireless modems can be installed in cars to work in conjunction with laptops and software to give each police vehicle its own, direct wireless connection to the central data system. The modem can solve the problem of overloaded voice dispatch systems, acting as the link between officers and direct access to DMV, personal and property information, and much more.

Sierra's industrial strength wireless modems are rugged enough to withstand hostile environments and offer such features as voice capability, integrated GPS, analog and digital I/O port, onboard UPD PAD, Slip and AT command interfaces, and Windows 95 and NT support.

Wireless technology is something cops use every day. It gets you the information you need when you need it. And you don't even need a modem cable linking your car to the station. Ain't technology grand?

Set Off a FLARE

Dominion's FLARE and FLASH alarm systems for corrections officers use a lightweight device about the size of a cell phone to transmit an RF distress signal when the wearer presses its easy-to-find alarm button. Almost immediately, sensors placed throughout the facility relay signal information to a centrally located computer, and security personnel have the alarm and location information they need to direct quick, accurate responses.


Because both products are specially designed to operate in a concrete and metal environment, building materials, smoke, heavy clothing, or human interference never interrupt their signals. Also, they operate on a licensed frequency in the Public Safety band and are protected from other radio signal interference-now and in the future.

Handheld Data Access

With so much focus on wireless technology created to improve officers' efficiency in the car with radios and mobile data terminals, let's not forget the usefulness of handhelds in accessingimportant data. You can use a handheld for mounted patrol, bike patrol, and walking the beat.

With TriTech's Voyager Query, officers can run in-state or out-of-state plates, check vehicle identification numbers, drivers' licenses, and get alerts within seconds, as well as other pertinent registration information, all on a handheld. With Voyager Query you'll have a better idea of what you're getting into before stepping out of the car or away from your bike.


Investigators can also use Voyager Query to run firearm serial numbers through state and federal databases and quickly receive data on make and model, plus any important alerts.

Voyager Query is protected by individual device security that is controlled by the host server. For added protection, the software is also password-protected by a required user login.

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Tags: Communications, In-Vehicle Computers

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