SOURCE: D-Link Systems, Inc.

March 04, 2008 08:00 ET

D-Link® Wireless Access Points Help Law Enforcement Agencies Gather Evidence

Police Vehicles Equipped With Durable D-Link APs Facilitate Large Simultaneous File Transfers, Speed Collection of Crucial Video

FOUNTAIN VALLEY, CA--(Marketwire - March 4, 2008) - D-Link Systems today announced it is helping catch bad guys with its wireless technology that transfers video from police cars to law enforcement evidence gathering facilities.

The networking company recently was approached by Kustom Signals, Inc. in Lenexa, Kan., supplier of in-car video systems, traffic speed radar, lidar and mobile roadside speed monitoring trailers to law enforcement agencies. Kustom was looking for a way to transfer the video evidence wirelessly and without human contact, and found D-Link's wireless access points (APs) to be an ideal fit.

"A lot of our agencies don't want officers touching evidence," said Craig Cigard, Product Manager - Back Office Video, Kustom Signals. "When someone is pulled over for a DUI, for example, the video from the car system is evidence that either exonerates an officer [from a liability claim] or puts someone in jail. From both evidentiary and productivity standpoints, the agencies want to eliminate officer interaction with the video."

Kustom Signal looked to D-Link for a rugged access point solution that could tolerate the heat, dust, and jarring activity of a police car, while also being easy to set up and maintain. They installed multiple D-Link® DWL-2200APs on the outside of police stations and outfitted each squad car with a client AP of the same model. Kustom Signals has installed these APs in thousands of police cars nationwide since 2004. "With wireless, you usually design for coverage," explained Cigard. "With these police download scenarios, we design for large simultaneous file transfers."

In the past, this unique law enforcement situation had its challenges. Each squad car films at least one hour of MPEG1, MPEG2 or MPEG4 video per shift, with the video files averaging 100MB and higher. When a police facility has only one access point, the file transfer process becomes sluggish as multiple cars enter and exit simultaneously, doubling download times. "The old ways of transferring files were just too cumbersome and flawed," Cigard said. "We knew the agencies would be interested in wireless. They could see the advantages."

Each police car now is equipped with a D-Link DWL-2200AP that features an embedded Microsoft Windows XP-based program that initiates an FTP session when the vehicle approaches headquarters. Video files are moved to the back office servers, into a database, and using RAID disks.

The officer drives up to the station, parks the vehicle, and is free to take care of business inside. The wireless signal from the D-Link AP has a range that allows him or her to park in a large general area. By the time the officer is ready to head out, the download is done, and the in-car storage is ready for more video. "The officer doesn't have to take anything out of the car," said Cigard. "There's no removable hard drive or tape. There's no need to run an Ethernet cable. Nobody has to do anything. Productivity increases, and the agency gathers unquestionable, untainted evidence automatically. It's a dedicated evidence network, untainted by the intranet within the agency."

Kustom Signals uses the channel settings on the APs to separate traffic at the building. They can be mounted anywhere and accommodate three to five APs per side of the building. At the police station a back-office application gathers, validates and verifies the video files then moves them to storage where they are searchable by time, date, and officer name. Each police vehicle has 80GB drives for video storage. Back office storage is typically in the 10, 12 or 18TB range. Officers can easily locate videos, burn DVDs and then take the evidence to court.

Kustom Signals chose D-Link APs because of their proven durability. "Initially, we looked at another brand," said Cigard. "Then we started testing for heat, cold, dust, dirt and humidity. These other boxes got really hot. I had one that was so hot I had to hold it in my shirt. The D-Link APs survived while competitive equipment didn't. That's important, because these police cars are flying down gravel roads, in chases and over train tracks. They take a lot of abuse. The D-Link equipment survives it all. We're really confident with the solution."

D-Link Product Information

DWL-2200AP High Speed 2.4GHz (802.11g) Wireless Access Point With PoE

--  Rogue access point detection
--  Integrated Power over Ethernet (PoE)
--  Also works as Wireless Distribution System (WDS), WDS with AP
--  Supports 802.11i (WPA2), WPA-Personal, WPA-Enterprise, MAC Address
    Filtering, WEP Encryption, SSID Broadcast Disable

About D-Link

D-Link is the global leader in connectivity for small, medium and large enterprise business networking. The company is an award-winning designer, developer and manufacturer of networking, broadband, digital electronics, voice, data and video communications solutions for the digital home, Small Office/Home Office (SOHO), Small to Medium Business (SMB), and Workgroup to Enterprise environments. With millions of networking and connectivity products manufactured and shipped, D-Link is a dominant market participant and price/performance leader in the networking and communications market. D-Link Systems, Inc. headquarters are located at 17595 Mt. Herrmann Street, Fountain Valley, Calif., 92708. Phone (800) 326-1688 or (714) 885-6000; FAX (866) 743-4905; Internet

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