The idea of national fingerprint GTD has been around for a while now and the online event yesterday was an important step towards making it happen.

Chief Constable Rachel Swann, NPCC lead for fingerprints and Chair of the National Fingerprint and Footwear Strategic Board, set the scene for the event. She explained that the board had identified the lack of a GTD as a gap for forces and fingerprint bureaux. The FCN has stepped in to coordinate efforts across the community and bring the database into reality.

The aim of the event was to scope out the level of interest & support, as well as looking at the basic requirements. Over 70 people took part in the discussion, hosted by Di Toyne (FCN Quality Specialist) and Paul Roberts (FCN Scientific Officer). There were also presentations from Lisa Hall from the Met Forensic Unit, talking about the grading system for GTDs she has developed and Guy Harris from Dstl, talking about the use of GTDs for training and competence.

Richard Case, Chair for the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences’ Fingerprint Division said: “An introduction of a dataset for use within the Police, academia and potentially other permitted 3rd parties is overdue. I'm looking forward to seeing this project progress!”

Di said: “We’re absolutely delighted with the level of interest and support for a networked approach to this work. The main areas we identified are validation, training and research, followed by accessibility for forces, academia and external organisations. There is clear support from forces to provide material and resources, subject to the necessary security and sharing assurances, so the next step will be to develop a pilot or proof of concept.

I’d like to thank everyone for taking part, especially Chief Constable Swann, Lisa and Guy. We’ll be in touch with everyone who attended and if anyone missed the event, a recording of it can be found here.” 

If you have any questions, please contact Di or Paul.