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New CIO will be ICT policeman to Australia’s policemen

by Paris Cowan •
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One of the Federal Government’s most ICT intensive agencies, CrimTrac, is advertising for a new Chief Information Officer.

The CIO role has been vacated by Darin Brumby following two years with the agency. Vicky Green will serve as acting CIO until a permanent replacement is found.

The successful candidate will assume one of the most elevated CIO roles among Canberra’s smaller agencies, answering directly to the CrimTrac CEO Doug Smith. Structurally the agency is split two-ways between ICT and non-ICT functions, with the former headed by the CIO.

One of the first items on the successful applicant’s agenda will be the renewal or renegotiation of a $22 million ICT managed services contract with Logica, which is due to expire on 30 June 2013. There is one 12 month extension remaining after this date, according the agency’s annual report.

With a remit to ensure cross border compatibility when it comes to enterprise architecture and policing systems, the new CrimTrac CIO will have to be an ICT policeman to Australia’s nine police forces.

CrimTrac facilitates the inter-jurisdictional sharing of crime records between State, Territory and Federal police forces, working to the mantra that “while Police respect borders, criminals do not”.

At just 185 staff, it is one of the smaller agencies in Canberra but it conducts ICT operations well beyond its size.

It is in charge of police history checks sought by employers and a variety of licensing operations. The Police Checking database is just one of the CrimTrac data repositories used by police and other stakeholders such as the Department of Immigration and Citizenship and the Australian Crime Commission. Others include the:

  • National Automated Fingerprint Identification System;
  • National Criminal Investigation Database;
  • Australian National Child Offender Register;
  • National Police Reference System; and
  • National Firearm Licence and Registration System.

The agency’s annual report shows that it spent approximately $22.8 million with suppliers in 2010-11. More than half of that, or $12.5 million, went on information technology and another $2.1 million on contractors, many of whom could have been ICT contractors.  

Intermedium’s contracts database shows the agency had two major multi-year contracts commence in the 2010-11 financial year taking the agency’s contracting total for the year to an exceptionally high $35.7 million for the year.  These contracts were a $17.2 million deal with the Safran Group for Morpho services out to 2015 and a $4.2 million data centre lease with Canberra Data Centres.

The following year saw a lower level of contracting activity at CrimTrac with $9 million in ICT contracts commencing in 2011-12.

The agency describes itself as a role model for “cooperative Federalism”, and the nature of its work means that it is ideally placed to test solutions for the secure and legal transmission of useful Public Sector Information between agencies and governments.

This level of data sharing has been one of the key targets of public sector ICT strategists in recent years, turning up as desirable outcomes in both the NSW Government’s ICT Strategy and the Federal Government’s Draft ICT Strategic Vision.

Related Articles:

New CIO joins FaHCSIA

Attorney General’s portfolio could pave the way to shared services

Federal agencies must learn to share, says draft whole-of-gov ICT strategy

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  • Federal
  • Justice
  • Canberra Data Centres
  • CIO
  • CrimTrac
  • Darin Brumby
  • Logica
  • Morpho
  • Safran Group
  • Vicky Green