At this point, most police departments understand the plethora of benefits that come with investing in police body cameras for use in interactions with the general public. In fact, according to a recent study, police equipped with body cameras receive 93% fewer complaints from the public. That being said, police body camera costs aren't always financially feasible for police departments, but by taking some of these tips into consideration, your department can find the perfect balance between safety and budget. Here are just a few data storage strategies to help your police department cut back on overall police body camera costs.
Experts say the cost of data storage quickly increases when there's a significant amount of footage being held onto for extended periods of time. Keeping footage as long as possible is undoubtedly critical for evidence-gathering purposes, but non-evidentiary footage can typically be deleted much sooner. Many departments have been experimenting with this tactic, and many have settled on timeframes of between 60 and 90 days.
Keep in mind that these savings extend beyond data storage and cloud management costs. Looking over any type of footage requires significant time and manpower, especially when it's sensitive information.
“It takes a lot of time, and personnel, to review and redact every tape. If you keep video for five years, it is going to take even more," Captain James Jones of the Houston Police Department told the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF).
Another creative strategy for reducing body camera and data storage costs is to use cloud storage only when necessary. For example, evidentiary footage that legally requires long-term retention can easily be moved to a department's RMS or IA case management system. Evidence of shootings and other serious felonies typically fall under this category. Taking a bit more time to store data properly can significantly help to reduce costs and free up additional storage space.
Ultimately, the global dashboard camera market, in terms of revenue, was valued at $1,458.2 million in 2013 and is forecast to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 15.3% during the period from 2014 to 2020. Keeping these tips in mind can help your department optimize financial efficiency through proper data storage.