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Get the Guide: Text Message and Social Media Compliance Best Practices for Law Enforcement Agencies
Social media provides a powerful mechanism for communication between law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve. Facebook and Twitter, for instance, offer direct ways to engage, to share critical updates and to receive candid feedback about local concerns.
Proper governance of these communications is a mission-critical responsibility. State “sunshine” laws modeled after the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) require that all communication sent or received by public agencies is subject to open records requests. This extends to text messages and social media posts and activity that contains work-related conversations or context. These records must be accessible to the public, and available for internal investigations or case logs
The retention and oversight of electronic communications also provides an avenue to demonstrate accountability and operational transparency. In turn, these efforts also help strengthen public trust.
Key law enforcement challenges
Smarsh enables customers to capture data from over 80 communications channels. This includes the most widely used social media platforms and text messages, as well as email, instant messaging/collaboration, voice and web platforms. Content is captured in its native format and retained with its original conversational context. Once archived, this content is automatically indexed and made searchable. This ensures that law enforcement can meet its information governance needs, from open records compliance to litigation preparation and internal investigations.
Smarsh captures and stores all data from 80+ communication channels approved for official business, including new and evolving platforms. Records teams, attorneys and human resources staff no longer have to search multiple servers in several locations, confiscate employee mobile devices or chase down individuals for copies of text messages, emails or social media communications. Whether for public records requests, e-discovery events or internal investigations, a single archive reduces the time and cost burden on in-house resources.
Advanced search and discovery
Law enforcement must be able to search and review content across all their electronic communications. This needs to be done quickly and efficiently to manage records requests, investigate violations of agency policies, identify corruption and provide training.
With Smarsh, electronic communications content is captured in its native format and shown in its original context. All conversations are automatically indexed and searchable by person, message type and keyword. Sophisticated discovery policies can then be created so that certain keywords or phrases can be detected, reviewed and escalated when necessary.
Easy, on-demand exports
With lightning-fast, granular searches, you can quickly find the data you’re looking for and respond to records requests with ease. Content can then be packaged and produced on-demand. Our solutions support multiple export formats, enabling you to extract relevant data and package it in multiple formats.
Law enforcement communications data requires enterprise-grade security. Smarsh archiving solutions are delivered with top-tier security, management and operational controls. All data is encrypted in transit and at rest, with stringent access controls. All electronic records are stored in an immutable, compliant format. Communications data can either be captured and sent to an existing archive or retained in the Smarsh integrated archive, with customizable retention periods to meet your needs.
It is important to be proactive, to spot trends in your data and have a fast, effective way to review areas of potential risk. Supervision capabilities from Smarsh can help law enforcement agencies proactively flag behavior violations like inappropriate language or harassment. This can prevent these situations from escalating and put controls in place to check this type of communication before it starts.
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