by Tomas O’Keefe, Senior Analyst
The Department of Justice’s response to the Boston Marathon bombings was notable for how quickly the Department and its components, particularly the FBI, identified, tracked, and apprehended the suspects. One of the ways the FBI was able to quickly identify suspects is due to advanced analytics, but another important element was citizen engagement, as the Department used crowd-sourcing for images people took during the marathon to aid in the investigation. The Department also requested information on journalists’ phone calls and issued requests to Google, Facebook, and the like for information to aid in the investigation. With all of this one thing is certain – the Department wrestled with Big Data. Big Data isn’t new to anyone in government or in the IT industry, but it isn’t going away either. Government will continue to need industry’s assistance in incorporating new technological tools to analyze ever-growing data sets and become more efficient and effective.
DOJ will continue to look to industry for advances in analytics technology that will synthesize video, image, audio, and other types of data together to protect the American people. The need to share information across DOJ and into other federal agencies will only grow, particularly as DOJ coordinates disaster response with the Department of Homeland Security. DOJ has a further challenge in that it must also share information with state and local law enforcement agencies. In the past several years, government has been adopting common information sharing standards to ensure that all these agencies can effectively communicate with each other. All of this information sharing is also occurring in an environment where cyber intrusions and attacks are increasingly common, and government cannot afford to let criminals and foreign actors access this information. Government will need cutting edge solutions from industry to ensure the safety of both the information it’s sharing and the American people.
The question for industry is who to talk to within DOJ, and who has the money in an environment where budgets are continuing to decrease and programs and contracts are potentially being cut. To learn more register for immixGroup’s upcoming Market Intelligence Webinar on the Department of Justice on Thursday, June 20 at 11:00 a.m. ET.