Last week, the SAC team had the opportunity to attend WA APCO NENA's Annual State Conference for Public Safety communication professionals. The overall focus of this year's event was to better equip Public Safety organizations to carry out their mission, with talks on cyber security, technological innovation, and other operational best practices.
This public safety event also provides valuable opportunities for key players within the Washington PSAP community to network, as well as train within workshops. Meanwhile, vendor booths gave an opportunity for commercial members and partners to learn about new products, solutions, and services. This included technologies for use at PSAP dispatch center, as well as communications and network infrastructure systems. For example:
Some of the attending 911 PSAP centers included:
We had the opportunity to attend several of the sessions, which we will outline below:
911 Data Messaging
This session focused on how emerging technology like the Internet of Things (IoT) can be utilized to provide First Responders with enhanced situational awareness in the field.
Lessons Learned and Trends from 300+ Cyber Security Assessments
This talk covered how cyber-attacks continue to be on the rise for Public Safety agencies and how critical overhauling cyber security capabilities is now. Each member of the PSAP has a responsibility to ensure systems and processes are protected from potential cyber threats. This includes simple, actionable steps that are often overlooked, like ensuring software is kept up-to-date.
Connecting your ECC to FirstNet: Why and How
This session provided an overview of FirstNet basics, connection types, and benefits of connecting for ECCs/PSAPs.
CISA 911 Cyber Awareness
This session focused on ensuring public safety communications stakeholders are aware of common cyber security threats and vulnerabilities affecting 9-1-1 environments. Some examples included ransomware attacks, Telephone Denial of Service (TDoS) attacks, vulnerable networks and devices, cryptojacking, email phishing, and more.
Leveraging Technology as a Force Multiplier
Emergency Communication Centers (ECCs) are experiencing staffing shortages and issues across the country. This can be addressed by using technology to decrease workloads and empower existing staff. The four ways that new technology can help include:
Eliminate non-emergency calls into the ECC using an online community portal.
Increase convenience and capability for field responder self-service.
Virtual and temporary ECC consolidation.
Remote work options (e.g. work from home).
Is your ECC/PSAP interested in assessing or transforming its cyber security capabilities? Our team has helped a variety of public safety and government organizations secure themselves against cyber threats. Get in touch with us today!