MCP Insights

Be Wary of Using Commercial Broadband Networks for Public Safety Voice

Posted on January 8, 2021 by Scott Neal

More than ever, broadband communications networks are essential to the public safety and justice communities. Such networks easily transmit highly bandwidth-intensive files, e.g., video and building floor plans, that would choke a narrowband network. Such files enhance situational awareness for incident commanders and other officials—as well as emergency responders and jail/prison officers—by orders of magnitude, which in turn helps them do their jobs better.

But there’s a flip side to broadband communications networks of which the public safety community needs to take seriously. Such networks typically are owned and operated by commercial entities, and because of this public safety agencies that contract for broadband services typically do not receive the performance guarantees and—even more importantly—the visibility into these networks that they’re used to receiving from the networks that they own and operate, for example, their land mobile radio (LMR) systems.

Consequently, public safety agencies should proceed carefully when they consider whether to contract with any commercial entity for broadband services.

Read More

A Few Thoughts on Data Integration for Public Safety Agencies

Posted on November 24, 2020 by Scott Neal

There was a time, not that long ago, when voice communications were king in the public safety community, and data communications were an afterthought. This largely was driven by the limitations of narrowband wireless systems. In the earliest days of data communications, such systems delivered throughput rates of 9,600 baud, which enabled the equivalent of text messages. Things improved a bit when data generated to and from field personnel was transmitted via air cards provisioned by commercial wireless carriers, but only modestly—the largest files that could be transmitted then were mug shots, and they often took a long time to arrive, if they arrived at all.

Read More

Policies and Training are Critical to Effective Body-Worn Camera Usage

Posted on November 19, 2020 by Scott Neal

The Chicago Sun-Times recently published a story that provides a cautionary tale that should be heeded by any law enforcement agency that is providing, or thinking of providing, body-worn cameras to its sworn officers.

Read More

Public Safety Needs a Better Way to Triage Emergency Calls

Posted on October 22, 2020 by Darrin Reilly

At MCP, our mission is to help clients improve emergency response outcomes.

Depending on the client and its unique environment and resources, this could mean providing guidance regarding technology, operations or governance, and often all three. The overarching goal is to ensure that 911 callers receive the most appropriate emergency response as quickly as possible. Lives often are on the line in an emergency, and every second matters.

Achieving a balance between sending the optimal response to an emergency and having it arrive as fast as possible is tricky. In fact, it is analogous to walking a tightrope. To achieve the former, many emergency communications centers (ECCs) rely on standard protocols developed for each type of emergency call that they receive, typically law enforcement, fire/rescue and emergency medical services.

Read More

Cybersecurity Threat Advisory: Cyberthreats Affecting the United States Presidential Election

Posted on October 20, 2020 by Mike Beagles

As part of our effort to inform our clients about potential and serious cybersecurity issues, MCP provides advisories about vulnerabilities and exploits that could threaten the operations of their critical communications networks. Sign up to receive these advisories in your inbox as soon as they are released.

Read More

Subscribe to Newsletter

Popular Posts