Multi-million pound project to enhance Police Scotland’s IT

Police Scotland is investing £3.9 million in a faster computer network to improve service and efficiency across the country.

Jul 30, 2019
By Paul Jacques

Officers in rural areas will be among the first to benefit from a move to a single provider – giving them access to video conferencing and faster file sharing.

The National Network Project – NatNet2 – has been installed in 20 pilot sites across the country ahead of a national phased rollout, which will continue until March next year. NatNet2 will deliver increased network performance, stability and capability by removing legacy network services and directing them to BT as a single provider.

The project is a part of a ten-year strategy to improve policing in Scotland and forms part of Police Scotland’s Digital, Data and ICT Strategy.

Martin Low, the force’s interim director of ICT, said: “Delivering new network services for Police Scotland will have a big impact on the working lives of our officers and staff and improvements to the network effectively underpin our programme of technology-enabled transformation. NatNet2 will ease some of the frustrations colleagues feel about how our systems perform on a day-to-day basis.”

David Wallace, director of BT’s Enterprise division public sector business in Scotland and chair of BT’s Scotland board, said faster speeds would be welcomed by police, especially in rural areas. “Officers involved in the pilot had previously reported struggling to upload files of any size, but under NatNet2 40mb files of video interviews are accessed in a few seconds,” he added.

“Video conferencing is now accessible to many areas and officers who previously complained that simply logging on to a legacy system could take up to ten minutes, are now able to access the network in seconds.”

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