Cumbria Constabulary has become the first UK police force to implement a nationally supported identity service that will help ensure that right people can access the right information at the right time. The newly introduced IAM service, which is being rolled out across policing, will help enable better cross-force and cross-partner collaboration, save valuable time and deliver enhanced security for policing information.
The newly introduced IAM (Identity Access Management) service provides secure, seamless user access to local, regional and national information, network services and applications, including cloud services in an efficient and effective way. It is an essential vehicle for ensuring forces can safely and securely share knowledge and information with each other and authorised partners.
Importantly, it also ensures these services and applications are inaccessible to unauthorised users.
‘Collaboration is a key element for modern policing’, said Michelle Skeer, Chief Constable at Cumbria Constabulary. ‘The IAM service, which we’ve worked closely with the NEP team to rollout across our force, will help ensure that both local and national problems can be effectively tackled in a trusted way with partners across the public health, education, social care and the charity sectors.’
‘We’ve worked with Cumbria Constabulary to put in place the foundations that help them collaborate’, commented Wayne Parkes, Director of the NEP and Chair of the National Police Technology Council (NPTC). ‘By equipping police forces with innovative and secure services, we’ll help them serve their communities in better ways, and ultimately help protect the public’.
The IAM service is the latest step in the work the NEP (National Enabling Programmes) is doing to transform ways of working in the 43 police forces across England and Wales. It builds on the NMC (National Management Centre) cyber protection facility, which is in live operation with Cumbria and 19 other forces, as well as the introduction of cloud-based productivity services based on the Microsoft 365 suite of applications.
Cumbria Constabulary, headquartered in Penrith, has gone into live operation with the IAM’s Joiner, Mover, Leaver (JML) module. This provides a single-identity for all accounts linked to the force’s more than 1,800 users.
The new service will also provide improved operational efficiency by reducing the administrative overhead related to managing user identities and automate the on-boarding and management of users. This will reduce the time taken to provision and revoke access to systems, which will improve efficiency and reduce security risk around redundant access.
By connecting through the force’s personnel administration system, it enables their roles, responsibilities and access rights to move with them, whilst keeping them secure.
This is especially useful in policing as officers and staff need to access information, resources and knowledge that reside in a wide variety of different IT systems. Additionally, because of the nature of their work, officers and staff in forces often need to change roles, work in different locations or remotely, or even temporarily assigned to another force.
The IAM will also ensure new officers and staff can quickly get up-to-speed, as their role-based access rights will be assigned automatically as soon as they are entered into the force’s personnel system.
Previously, these processes were handled manually, with first-line staff needing to re-key and re-enter details across multiple systems. This often resulted in duplication and errors, which caused delays in officers being able to access the information they need.
Cumbria Constabulary is a territorial police force covering the county of Cumbria in North West England. The force covers the fifth largest geographic police area in England and Wales, including the major urban areas of Carlisle and Barrow-in-Furness as well as the Lake District National Park, which attracts more than 23 million visitors each year.
The National Enabling Programmes (NEP) was created to introduce a secure platform and national standards that enable new ways of working and collaborating for the 43 police forces that make up policing across England and Wales.
The NEP’s transformation work is a vital cog in the delivery of the Policing Vision 2025. Developed by the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) and the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC). The Vision shapes decisions around transformation and how the police use their resources to help keep people safe and provide an effective, accessible and value for money service that can be trusted.