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The FCN’s technology element consists of the technical capabilities being developed by the Transforming Forensics Programme, in consultation with the forensic science community.

These are designed to connect and enhance members’ forensic science capabilities and are being developed to ensure scalability and the opportunity for incremental growth, as resources allow.

They include the FCN’s underlying ICT platform and toolsets, which will:

  • provide web-based resources, including knowledge bases, to help practitioners access up-to-date learning, standards and requirements;
  • provide, through joint working with other national initiatives, secure cloud-based storage and processing of forensic evidence;
  • provide integration with local criminal case and evidence management systems;
  • enable FCN members to prioritise and share workload across the network;
  • provide service management information to control work flows, highlight bottlenecks and manage performance.

They also include specialist tools and capabilities. Some of the first examples of these are specialist fingerprint capabilities, such as:

  • enabling CSIs to capture fingermarks digitally at the scene and transmit them electronically through the FCN platform to the most appropriate or chosen fingerprint identification bureau;
  • enabling CSIs to capture, annotate and share photos of crime scenes and fingermarks in real time;
  • providing new digital examination tools and enabling the production of automated practitioner notes.

This early emphasis on fingerprint capabilities is designed to maximise the benefits of the Home Office Biometrics (HOB) Programme.

Over time, and depending upon the level of continued investment through the Transforming Forensics Programme or other funding sources, we aim to extend the underlying platform and develop toolsets for use by many more forensic science capabilities.

You can read more about the timescales for FCN technology development on our timeline page.

More information about our plans is available in the FCN Prospectus.