In September, the federal Department of Justice (DOJ) awarded $23 million in grants to help 73 law enforcement agencies buy and implement the use of body cameras. GPN checked in with Wayne Arvidson, vice president of video surveillance solutions at Quantum to get his views following the news about the grants.

San Jose, Calif.–based Quantum provides systems for capturing, sharing and preserving digital assets over the entire data lifecycle. The company’s storage infrastructure handles huge volumes of data with ease. The infrastructure delivers real-time access to data, regardless of whether it’s on disk, tape, or in the cloud. The firm has experts in scale-out storage, archive and data protection. Go here for information on the firm’s video surveillance storage systems. Here are Wayne Arvidson’s views.

GPN: What kind of systems should the police departments buy?

Wayne Arvidson (photo below on left): The choices that departments make regarding their data storage system can make a big difference in how much body-camera data they collect in a shift. Some departments are even being forced to switch off their cameras until they anticipate contact with people due to the massive amount of data storage the hours of video require.

Retention policies also are a key consideration, as surveillance video retention policies do vary at the state and local level. Adopting a tiered storage approach can cover retention availability needs seamlessly and leave budget for other critical system infrastructure as the program grows.

The ability to seamlessly integrate more sources of information into modern analytical tools is becoming more important, as is the capacity to scale and accommodate increased camera and sensor counts, panoramic coverage, and higher image resolution. Scale-out storage with a tiered approach can support this need, as capacity can be added to the overall system across storage tiers to balance required performance and capacity with available budget.

GPN: What advice for cities do you have on deploying the cameras?

WA: A scalable, tiered approach to storage is the key to making body-worn cameras viable for the long term. Tiering data can keep departments from having to choose between adequate storage and the number of cameras and features (resolution, retention, etc.) needed for their public safety initiatives. Additionally, unifying these tiers under a single file system helps keep video accessible, ensuring that law enforcement professionals can focus on protecting people and property, not managing data, or needing extensive IT support to do their job.

GPN: What's the most important takeaway for law enforcement from the DOJ’s $23 million in federal grants for body-worn cameras?

WA: Departments need to shift their attention to what’s behind the camera. From a budget and implementation perspective, so much of the focus has been on the actual cameras/devices that will be used for on-body surveillance. Yet, storage represents the majority of implementation and management cost, and has a big influence on what camera systems are capable of doing.

Storage should be the first consideration as you build out a video surveillance infrastructure. Using a tiered approach allows departments to meet their capacity requirements more cost-effectively, and unifying under a single file system means ease of accessibility and the right balance of on-premise and off-site or cloud storage.

GPN: Thank you, Wayne Arvidson, for your views.

The video discusses three Quantum cloud-based systems that integrate the cloud into tiered storage architectures for demanding workloads.

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