Notts Police boosts security with single sign-on

Nottinghamshire Police has implemented a single sign-on system to improve efficiency.

Nottinghamshire Police has implemented a single sign-on system to improve efficiency.

Police chiefs decided the old system - where staff used up to 10 different passwords for a range of different applications - was too risky and led to forgetting of passwords and slow logging-on.

The system is used to gain access to whichever IT and intelligence systems staff are authorised to use.

Martin Hansen, director of information at Nottinghamshire Police, said, "We never had any security lapses but we often had people writing down or forgetting their passwords, because they need to access so many applications."

He added officers often need access to a range of different systems, including national databases.

The force is also considering upgrading the system in the future, enabling staff to enter applications using smartcards and biometric fingerprint data. Other forces, such as Humberside Police, have already implemented biometric data security.

Hansen said, "It means officers do not need to have all these additional passwords. It saves them a lot of time, and we think improves security as well."

Mike Nelsey, managing director at Enline, which installed the system, said, "What is important for police is to know exactly who is on the system at a certain point, and what they have been doing.

"If it is difficult to log on and off, people may stay logged on in a busy office and everyone will use their account. They may start to share log-ons or passwords. The system increases accountability as well as usability."

If officers forget their password, instead of a previous lengthy security process, they now have a list of self-service questions to answer before they can change it. The system also advises them on how to choose a strong password.

Hansen said, "It has increased our productivity and enables officers to work more efficiently across the different systems."

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