Australian police expect to need digital skills

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Wednesday, 10 October, 2018

Australian police expect to need digital skills

Two-thirds of Australian police expect they will need to learn new digital skills to be effective in their roles over the next 3–5 years, according to a survey from professional services company Accenture.

The survey of police from Australia, France, Germany, Singapore, the UK and the US found that more than half (54%) of policing personnel are willing to learn new digital skills if they receive the training from their employer.

Police believe that technology has the potential to improve areas of policing operations, including emergency response (37%), police investigations (29%) and identifying or targeting known criminals and gang networks (27%).

The technologies respondents expect their workplaces to be most likely to adopt over the next 3–5 years include biometrics (37%), body-worn cameras (31%), video analytics (23%) and predictive policing technologies (20%).

Police forces are already employing technology in their operations, with 41% currently using artificial intelligence to at least some degree.

More than a third (35%) are using AI to enhance administrative tasks and processes, while 31% are using it to assist with forensics-related activities and 27% are using it as part of their social media analysis to identify risks.

“This research tells us that while most police officers are excited by the opportunities new digital technologies afford and the impact they will have on their workplace, many are challenged in their use of the technologies due to a lack of training or access to specialist skills and knowledge,” commented Matt Ilijic, the leader of Accenture’s policing and public safety practice in Australia and New Zealand.

“Every policing organisation must prepare its workforce in the use of new technologies and enable employees to benefit from the opportunities that the technologies will bring to their operations over the coming years.”

Image credit: ©Rafael Ben-Ari/Dollar Photo Club

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