Police are mostly mobile, and with that, comes the need to bring their technology with them. Thankfully, technology has advanced and become more compact. Police are now able to carry a variety of technology on them which can improve officer safety and efficiency. There are several types of wearable tech available that have different functions and purposes.
Below are four ways agencies can implement wearable tech for their officers.
Smartwatches and Smartphones
Smartwatches and smartphones can be linked to the agency’s CAD-system. Officers can quickly review incoming information and generate an SOS signal in times of emergency. Additionally, through the use of biometrics and GPS-tracking, dispatch can send backup through various signals. These signals being if an officer draws a firearm, unusual heart rate, and gunshot noise.
While most officers might already have their own smartwatches or smartphones, it’s a safe idea to provide agency-issued devices. Officers who use their own device require connection to their agency’s organizational networks which contain sensitive data. This could potentially result in improper management of data, causing huge risks for your agency.
We’ve seen biometrics be used in smartwatches and smartphones but what about your clothing? Smart fabrics take wearable tech to the next level. It is predicted that the smart clothing market will grow from US$491.84 million in 2019 to US$2,438.87 million by 2027. Essentially, smart fabric would be able to detect one’s heart rate and stress levels, and it could have a GPS tracker. This information would be wirelessly sent to a smartphone or remote locations where they could further respond. The fabric could also have a bullet wound detection and blood pressure sensors, which could improve officer safety.
Body-Worn Cameras (BWC)
The discussion around BWCs is nothing new and a lot of police departments have implemented them. While there are concerns to address before implementing them, BWCs certainly have their benefits. BWCs are mostly used to capture details of a crime scene while it’s still fresh. Police can cover more area at a faster rate while capturing photos, location, direction, and distance information. Police can also convert this information into a 3D rendering, which can be helpful for an investigation.
Drones are another technology that are already being heavily used in law enforcement operations. And while there are agencies who have UAS (unmanned aerial systems) teams, it would be helpful to have the device available to other officers for more area coverage. Several companies are already making tiny drones that attach to the back of a cell phone, so officers can deploy them at any time.
Wearable tech is certainly a trend that will stay in law enforcement. With proper planning and research, body-worn tech can be a great asset in improving officer safety and efficiency and in turn, better protect their community.