National Criminal Intelligence System
The National Criminal Intelligence System (NCIS) will be a whole of government capability, operating in a secure, national information sharing environment. It will support collation and sharing of criminal intelligence and information across state, territory and Commonwealth law enforcement.
NCIS will give Australia’s law enforcement and intelligence agencies the first truly national, unified picture of criminal activity and enable police and law enforcement personnel to find the information they need to keep themselves and the community safe.
The Australian Government provided half of the funding to implement the first tranche of the National Criminal Intelligence System (NCIS). The other half of the funding came from the National Policing Information Systems and Services Special Account. The initial build of NCIS, which began in 2018, will provide targeted, timely, relevant, prioritised national policing information, improving our ability to work together across jurisdictions and agencies.
NCIS will deliver:
- A secure and trusted information sharing platform across law enforcement.
- A national, unified view of law enforcement information from ACIC and law enforcement partners (including Commonwealth agencies).
- Services to enable ACIC partners to be aware when another agency is interested in an entity or person of interest to facilitate agency collaboration and enhance community safety and officer safety.
- Funding support for law enforcement partner agencies (excluding Commonwealth) to connect with NCIS to share and utilise national data.
NCIS is actively involving multiple partners across state, territory and Commonwealth law enforcement and intelligence agencies in its development. The work with partners during the year has prepared NCIS for real-world use by frontline operations.
Agencies will be progressively onboarded during 2021.
NCIS Pilot Program
The capabilities and real-world value of NCIS were demonstrated through the NCIS Pilot Program which ran from July 2015 to July 2017.
Our agency worked with 20 Commonwealth, state and territory partner organisations to collaborate on the pilot.
The pilot attracted around 11,000 searches across more than 600 million records and proved real-world benefits with enhanced information and criminal intelligence sharing.
Agencies in the pilot benefitted from: more informed risk assessments, which enhanced officer safety; improved efficiency in discovering information and intelligence; deconfliction and greater collaboration across agencies; improved access to and awareness of existing and new criminal intelligence and information; better understanding of criminality and associations for persons of interest; and new lines of inquiry for investigators.
- NCIS checks revealed information from Australia that helped lead to the arrest and sentencing of an international cybercriminal in the United Kingdom, who had used malware to fraudulently remove $700,000 from an Australian business bank account.
- An analyst from a Commonwealth agency and an analyst from a state policing agency were both searching the NCIS pilot system for the same person of interest. The deconfliction alert enabled the two analysts to get in touch and collaborate on their investigations into the person of interest, reducing duplication of effort.
- The Joint Counter Terrorism Team received a short-notice referral of a potential terrorist threat to public safety in Melbourne over the 2016 Christmas period. When the nature of the threat changed and the need to move on search warrants and arrests was unexpectedly brought forward, investigators used NCIS to check details for persons of interest in a quicker timeframe than previously possible.