Government aims to improve emergency response with extranet

The Cabinet Office has enlisted BT to build...

The Cabinet Office has enlisted BT to build an extranet to help the UK respond to emergencies.

The National Resilience Extranet (NRE) will provide organisations such as fire and rescue services, utility companies and strategic health authorities with secure, internet-based collaboration technology.

The NRE is aimed at helping organisations respond better to emergencies by sharing information and communicating online.

It will be a browser-based "collaborative working tool" which will enable information exchange both during planning and in response to emergencies such as floods and outbreaks of agricultural diseases.

Responding organisations, government departments and agencies will be able to share knowledge, plan responses and manage situations as they happen.

The extranet is part of the government's response to emergencies over the past few years, such as the 2007 floods and the foot and mouth outbreak. It is an attempt to improve secure communication and information sharing.

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