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FORENSOR Report Summary

Project ID: 653355
Funded under: H2020-EU.3.7.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - FORENSOR (FOREnsic evidence gathering autonomous seNSOR)

Reporting period: 2015-09-01 to 2016-08-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Covert evidence gathering has not seen major changes in decades. Law enforcement Agencies (LEAs) still rely heavily on conventional, man-power based techniques such as interviews and searches to gather forensic evidence. As sophistication of both criminals and their crimes are increasing, investigators must improve the means available for gathering a body of compelling evidence of a suspect’s involvement in a crime. Concealed surveillance devices have traditionally proven to be instrumental in this direction, providing irrefutable evidence that can play an important part in bringing criminals to justice. However, current video surveillance systems are usually bulky and complicated, and rely on complex, expensive infrastructure to supply power, bandwidth and illumination.
The FORENSOR project aims to develop and validate a novel, ultra-low-power, miniaturised, low-cost, wireless, autonomous sensor (“FORENSOR”) for evidence gathering, able to operate for up to two months without infrastructure. FORENSOR will be manageable remotely, will preserve the availability and the integrity of the evidence collected, and will comply with legal/ ethical standards, especially with regards to privacy and personal data protection. Secure and intelligent communications will let such sensors join their forces towards robust evidence management and real time monitoring and control operations. The combination of built-in intelligence with ultra-low power consumption will make this device a true breakthrough for combating crime.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

During the first year of the FORENSOR project the basis for the achievement of its managerial, ethical, scientific, technical, dissemination, and exploitation objectives was set.
The project issued a management and a quality assurance manual for all members of the FORENSOR consortium, and prescribed its data and risk management (including a SWOT analysis) plans.
A large portion of the planned scientific research, the design and development of novel image processing algorithms and the adaptation of existing ones, has been conducted – and a part of it was already successfully published at international conferences – while the foundations for the rest of it have been set.
The overall design of the FORENSOR system nears completion as real user driven Use Cases have been defined, system requirements have been identified and properly documented, and a detailed system architecture has been defined as well (including detailed component specification). At the same time, the 1st version of the ultra-low-power vision chip with embedded image pre-processing – the heart of the FORENSOR system – has been successfully designed and manufactured. Finally, the effort of integrating the various system components (vision chip, algorithms, supporting board, communications, software) has been initiated by issuing a comprehensive integration plan, organising specific teams within the FORENSOR consortium that will handle the integration of respective parts of the system and attempting to put together a first, early prototype of the system.
With regards to disseminating its results to the various stakeholders and society in general, the FORESNOR project undertook several dissemination activities during this first year. The project set up a comprehensive communication and media plan and already employed a variety of communication tools such as: creation of corporate image (logo, moto etc.), emailing list, press releases, newsletter, website. Moreover, liaison with the LASIE project has been established and initial scientific results have already been disseminated to the scientific community through the submission of papers.
Finally, although early in the project lifetime, during this first year of work FORENSOR intensively considered exploitation options and possibilities. The work was concretized regarding market analysis with the issuance of a respective deliverable but further efforts regarding business modelling, competitor analysis, etc. have been conducted and are already mature (respective deliverables will follow).

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

FORENSOR project has concentrated its efforts in building a novel, smart, and ultra-low power consumption sensor able to sense in diverse and infrastructure-less environments for criminal activity. The developments of the still ongoing effort have thus far advanced the state of the art in several directions. Primordially, a whole new ultra-low power consumption vision chip, able to differentiate between suspect motion and regular motion has been manufactured. The ability of triggering in only suspected motion patterns enable for much less false alarms that in practice turn such sensors useless. Secondly, the overall system with its built-in intelligence, able for higher level scene characterization, can provide the Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) with reliable information, equally useful for intervention and evidence gathering. The coupling of the visual sensor (triggering high level scene characterization only when needed) with the higher level built-in intelligent module is a breakthrough in the overall power consumption of the final product but also in its legal/ethical compliance and privacy friendliness, since video is recorded only when a suspicious event occurs. Finally, the ability of the sensor to communicate in real time its gathered information through intelligent routing algorithms between different such sensors (the so-called FORENSOR nodes) makes FORENSOR a smart and beneficial technological apparatus in crime fighting.

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