Home Office aims to provide single system to serve 50,000 users by 2019-20
The Home Office is taking steps to develop a new automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) system to replace the National ANPR Data Centre for use by police forces.
It has indicated that the old system is approaching end of life and put out a call for support in programme management and technology delivery under its National ANPR Service (NAS) Programme.
The existing data centre brings together ANPR images from more than 40 individual systems run by police forces and law enforcement agencies, each of which has its own connections and partnership arrangements.
The Home Office is now aiming to set up a single system for all police forces in England and Wales and 17 approved agencies, to serve around 50,000 users in its first year of 2019-20.
Among the aims are to standardise the use of ANPR and provide tools to better exploit the technology, although the department has not yet provided any details in public.
According to the National Police Chiefs Council, around 8,500 ANPR cameras submit between 25-35 million ‘read’ records to the national data centre each day. Access to this is confined to police officers and enforcement officials carrying out legitimate investigations, with permission usually lasting for a maximum of 90 days from the date it was collected, although some staff are authorised for up to two years.
Image by Adrian Pingstone, public domain