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Met closes in on digital forensics procurement choice

David Bicknell Published 01 May 2017

A contract is said to have been approved with signing expected imminently; procurement of a Met integrated policing solution continues

 

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) is in the final stages of a long-running procurement process to find a managed service provider for a digital forensics service.

It is understood that the digital forensics contract has now approved and was due to be signed “imminently.” Late last year, the London Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) indicated that the contract was in the final stages of evaluation with the intention of notifying the successful supplier in January this year.

That it has taken until Spring to come up with a winning bidder may mean that the contract award was delayed either because of further discussions over the winning vendor or the precise detail of the contract taking longer to discuss between the winning bidder and the MPS.

Meanwhile Government Computing was told that work is still ongoing on the procurement process for an integrated policing solution. The Met Integrated Policing Solution (MiPS) tender is intended to deliver "a single integrated, unified, operational policing system that managed information end-to-end business policing processes in relation to investigation, detention (custody), intelligence and case management". The contact is understood to be worth between £80m and £150m for a ten-year deal.

Late last year it emerged that the Met was in contact with shortlisted suppliers, with the process due to be concluded this year. However, as the contract is a high-profile one, it would not be a surprise if the timetable slips. It has not been disclosed who the shortlisted suppliers are, but the key contenders would seem to come from Canadian company Niche, Northgate/Athena, Capita, and Accenture. A dark horse could also be the Red Sigma Microsoft Dynamics-based solution developed by Durham Constabulary. It is possible that some companies may partner up in an attempt to secure the Met’s approval for their solution.

The digital forensics managed service is expected to have upto three core services. Level 1 and Level 2 cover frontline self-service and hubs, with the provision of systems, software and the associated management, maintenance and repair to enable the forensic examination of digital equipment to be carried out at the point of need (i.e. at a police station).

Level 3 covers technical services split into three main component parts: the provision of case work development to solve operational challenges to the retrieval of intelligence or evidence; the provision of research and development services and/or consultancy services; and the delivery of lab-based forensic analysis of digital devices (forensic analysis for complex cases) where required by the MPS.

A pre-tender for a service was first signalled in March 2014 when the MPS said it wanted to appoint a managed service provider to provide front line technology, a forensic informatics solution, digital and lab based forensic analysis and related services.

The pre-tender said then that the force's Forensic Services Department had reviewed the delivery of digital forensics services and was looking to "embed a new operating model."

 







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