New software addresses undercover management

Software developer ABM has unveiled a new system that helps police forces and law enforcement agencies to improve the way they manage undercover operations.

Mar 29, 2012
By Paul Jacques

Software developer ABM has unveiled a new system that helps police forces and law enforcement agencies to improve the way they manage undercover operations.

The new software responds to many of the issues highlighted by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) following the case of PC Mark Kennedy, the undercover officer who spent several years infiltrating a group of environmental activists who planned to break in to the Ratcliffe-on-Soar power station in Nottinghamshire.

The HMIC report found that issues concerning the management of PC Kennedy ultimately led to a miscarriage of justice against the environmental protesters. HMIC reviewed administrative processes, handling of undercover officers by supervisors and management of intelligence and found that there was room for improvement, outlining four key recommendations.

HMIC said that although undercover operations were crucial to maintaining a safe society, police forces and law enforcement agencies had a responsibility to ensure that justice was administered fairly and that people’s human rights were not unduly contravened.

ABM’s latest development, abmpegasus Undercover, addresses many of HMIC’s concerns over policy and procedure, incorporating features for:

•Managing risk assessments and consideration of proportionality and necessity;

•Ensuring that undercover officers have completed necessary training;

•Ensuring that undercover officers attend psychological assessments;

•Ensuring authorising officers are aware of the extent and nature of intrusion;

•Managing Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) authorisations and renewals;

•Improving awareness of the intelligence context;

•Regular reviews of undercover operations lasting longer than six months; and

•Managing disclosure and communication between agencies.

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