Home Office seeks AWS and Windows experts for criminal data lake

UK government is hoping to replace legacy systems first installed in 1974

The Home Office is aiming to have its long-awaited criminal data lake up and running by 2023 after putting out a public tender for relevant experts. 

The Law Enforcement Data (LED) service is on track to be completed by 2023, according to the Home Office, which will see the upgrade of outdated police resources into one searchable service.

The idea was first put forward in 2014 as the National Law Enforcement Data Programme (NLEDP), but the scheme would eventually fall behind schedule and over budget. However, the Home Office is now seeking to attract contractors with a £3 million public tender through the Police and Public Protection Technology directorate, in an effort to revive the proposals.

The scheme is hoping to encourage applications from those with knowledge of AWS security services such as S3, EC2, DMS Databases, Cloudtrail, Cloudwatch, and also expertise of Windows, Red Hat and Splunk. The application window is open until 17 March.

The LED service will replace the Police National Computer (PNC) and the Police National Database (PND). Due to the age of these systems, the technology that underpins them is increasingly difficult and expensive to maintain - PNC was first launched in 1974 and is largely run on the same technology.

PND was a service introduced as a recommendation following the Bichard enquiry into the Soham Murders in 2002. The report recommended a national system for sharing police intelligence to ensure better protection for the public, but, despite launching in 2009, that too is in need of upgrading.

"To tackle modern crime it is vital that the police have access to fast and accurate data and intelligence that can be shared between forces," a Home Office spokesperson said. "The Police National Computer and Police National Database will be replaced by the new Law Enforcement Data Service (LEDS), saving £216 million over ten years when it is rolled out nationally." The Police and Public Protection Technology directorate contains a number of delivery programmes, including the Law Enforcement Cloud Platform, which will be hosted on a public cloud. The programme is still in the design and planning phase and the Home Office were unable to confirm when this will be live.

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