Welcome to the third vlog of our InterTalk Enlite™ console system series, where we are featuring the use of cloud reliability in public safety companies.
The cloud is being adopted everywhere. The adoption of cloud systems and applications has risen to the point where the vast majority of the population has some form of interaction with it in our daily lives — whether it is an email account, a business suite of productivity tools, or online storage — every day we take advantage of the benefits of the cloud in the dispatch software industry.
However, when it comes to business operations, especially in terms of public safety technologies, how willing are we to entrust operational continuity to the cloud? What about security and access?
There is legitimate concern over the reliability and security of cloud-hosted systems, and whether they are safe to use in a public safety environment.
Perhaps in the early adoption of cloud-based technologies, the risk was simply too great to consider using off-premise systems outside the control of the agency. However, as cloud architecture and data centers have evolved, that risk has diminished substantially, to the point where the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.
First and foremost, hosting services provided by companies whose sole purpose is to provide safe, reliable access to your systems and applications. They are experts in their field — much like you’re an expert in yours, and provide the latest in hardware platforms, storage, and memory capacity of the server bank, and much more regular maintenance of the environment.
Imagine if your computer or server was given the royal treatment, as these data centres are—optimal performance at all times. With continuous technology upgrades and upgrades of hardware and firmware, and the best security experts in the world, data hosts maintain peak performance of their environment.
But what happens when I lose my connection to the internet? The probability of service being disrupted on the host is negligible compared to the risk of losing internal access via your ISP or LAN connection. With InterTalk Enlite, we have considered this issue in our architecture, enabling continued service throughout multiple services, such as LTE and satellite services. So, when the internet goes down, your dispatch operations will not go with it.
With the rollout of FirstNet, it has become clear that the cloud’s role has moved from future-looking to here-and-now. Benefits of the cloud are clear: more cost-effective than mounds of hardware, reduced maintenance costs, inherent interoperability with cloud applications, access to modern technology capabilities without large capital outlays, access to digital dispatch systems on readily-available consumer-grade hardware like laptops, desktops, tablets, and smartphones, product upgrades that occur seamlessly — no more “rip & replace,” no action needed as a vendor pushes an update through. Mobile dispatch software and cloud technologies also remove data that creeps in with multiple proprietary vendors — information is available and easy to access. You can easily integrate other cloud technology like webcam feeds, cloud-based CAD data, records management systems, and share data like never before.
The question is not whether your agency will go to the cloud, but when.