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05 Aug 2016 Colin Graf

Overwhelmed with Body Cam Data? Get on Board with MetaStor

Overwhelmed with Body Cam Data? Get on Board with MetaStor

As Time magazine reported earlier this year,
almost one-third of the nation’s 18,000 state and local police
departments are requiring their officers to strap on body worn video
cameras to document civilian encounters.

The need for law enforcement to
demonstrate accountability has never been greater, given the national
outcry over police shootings of suspects and, more
recently, the random retaliatory slayings of police officers. Body
and dashboard-mounted cameras provide evidence that can exonerate, as
well as incriminate, officers of the law.

Pressure Mounts

As a result, the rapid expansion
of video surveillance places enormous demands on law enforcement
agencies, which have to analyze and store vast amounts data. The Time article notes that Mary Fan,
JD, a law professor at the University of Washington in Seattle,
estimates that the largest municipal police departments generate some
10,000 hours of video footage a week.

Two Options

Police
departments have two main options for video storage:

  • Purchase an
    on-site archiving system that can be a major capital investment
  • Use a third-party cloud storage provider

Storing video
footage on-site means that this crucial data will be more vulnerable to
natural disasters such as fires and flooding, as well as deliberate
vandalism or hacking by those who seek to destroy potentially damaging
evidence – not to mention the capital expense involved.

Not All Clouds Are Equal

Using a third-party cloud server eliminates the need for
major capital investment beyond what your department is paying for the
cameras themselves. But not all cloud service providers are equal.

The
two largest manufacturers of body-cams offer video cloud storage
services, which may seem convenient but typically are not cost-effective
solutions. For example, Taser International charges over $540,000
per per year for storing body and dashboard camera video for the City of Fort Worth, Texas, according to an article titled Taser is Charging Stunning Fees to Handle Police Video in Bloomberg Business. Taser makes a much
larger profit on its video storage service (51% gross profit
margin) than on its hardware (15.6% gross profit margin),
reported an article published in Computerworld last year. Indeed, big city police departments are spending millions of
dollars to purchase body-cam equipment and data storage from these
manufacturers – but there is another option.

A Trusted & Cost-Effective Alternative

An alternative to consider is a cloud provider that
specializes in enterprise content management and automation technology solutions—a provider that
many municipalities already rely on for the majority of their document
management needs.

Powered by EMC ApplicationXtender (AX) document management software, MetaStor by MetaSource is a cloud-based enterprise
content management system that allows you to quickly retrieve and manage
video footage and other types of files. Controlled by multiple levels
of security, the system ensures that only the appropriate department
personnel can access video evidence.

MetaStor is easy to use, with
a clean and intuitive interface that enables organizations to deploy
the solution at once—a must for any department that is becoming
overwhelmed by relentlessly accumulating video files. The platform is
also affordable especially when you consider what Taser charges for both licensing and storage ($2.7 million over five years for Ft. Worth). A simple subscription model allows organizations to be
invoiced for actual storage used without separate licensing charges.

Equally important, MetaStor will help you with data retention management, ensuring regulatory compliance and minimizing risks and lost files.

Contact us for better control over your body and dashboard camera video files today