Organization: Miami Police Department
Benefit: Searching 15 years' worth of crime information
in an instant.
Industry: Law Enforcement
Data indexed: Over 15,000 files
Data types: Word documents, external websites
No. of users: 4
Used ISYS since: 1997
The Intelligence Analyst Unit of the Miami Police
Department conducts research and provides background information on
narcotics, bombing and organized crime cases, and also offers support
to other units such as homicide and sexual battery. Criminal Intelligence
Analyst Supervisor Scott Nugent and his unit use ISYS:web to search
through their pertinent information.
"For 16-17 years, we have searched intelligence
files on a full text search based system. All reports are narrative
based; we don't use database systems," says Nugent. He believes
that there are many more advantages to a document-based storage method
with full text search capabilities as opposed to databases. Since databases
only offer structured queries, users are given a set of fields that
they can search. Full text search widens the search possibilities, offering
limitless ways of interrogating information, giving the user full control
and ensuring accuracy.
Over 1,000 reports are generated each year in the
Intelligence Analyst Unit. For the past 15 years over 15,000 documents
have been indexed in the ISYS database. The reports have been growing
continuously yearly, as additional information is gathered on each case.
ISYS allows users to search 15 years of historical data in over 125
"ISYS allows the organization to focus on the
output of information rather than the input," says Nugent. Prior
to ISYS, the unit was limited to what they could enter into fields.
"With ISYS we were able to expand the amount of information that
we could input into the reports and to customize our reports to our
liking. Cutting and pasting of information is used often, since ISYS
searches every word in our documents, this has made inputting information
much less of a hassle," explains Nugent. "The longer processes
take, the less likely people are willing to perform them."
ISYS plays a major role in all cases handled by the
Intelligence Analyst unit. "ISYS also allows us to go to Internet
sites and pull information on drugs such as Ecstasy, or a report from
the state on terrorism - and download the entire report into the directory
and index it. ISYS is a great research tool. It allows us to react quickly
to pertinent and time sensitive information requests from investigators,"