Uptake of new generation AI Powered Investigative tools for LEAs

The application of AI methods to Big Data heralds a new era in Law Enforcement, increasing the operational capabilities of Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) in fighting and predicting crime. Promising tech solutions and tools are being developed within the framework of EU and nationally funded R&I projects reaching TRL 6-7 and applicable to a wide number of investigative fields. Building up from such previous and ongoing R&I projects (AIDA, DANTE, GRACE, STARLIGHT), the overall goal of EMPOWER is to foster the uptake of innovative solutions based upon AI powered tools allowing LEAs to increase their capabilities in such investigative fields.

To this end, EMPOWER will pilot test a total of 8 investigative tools in the fields of Image/Video, Voice/Text and Federated Learning, in a concerted effort carried out by a consortium of 10 partners from 5 Member States (Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain), representatives of the Security and Law Enforcement R&I community: 2 LEAs (MIR-PN and PJ), 6 companies and SMEs (ENG, HERTA, ICTLC, TGO, TREBE, and VOI) and 2 RTOs (CERTH and VICOM). As a result of the project, 8 tools will be brought to TRL 8 level, following their testing by MIR-PN and PJ with operational datasets in real-life environments. Such tools will be made available to other non-partner LEAs through open repositories and licensing schemes in coordination with key players such as Europol, EACTDA, ENFSI, EuCB and CERIS. Lastly, anonymised data sets, a training needs analysis, training materials and recommendations about i) Data Interoperability and standardisation, ii) AI Trustworthiness of LEA tools, and iii) the Innovation Uptake models of new AI based solutions by LEAs, will also be widely disseminated.

M4D has a critical role in the project by leading a WP on “Large-scale pilot design & preparation” focusing on the preparation of the project use cases, the design of the federated environment and the adaptation of the EMPOWER final tools. In this context, M4D coordinates the process for the definition of the EMPOWER use cases and the elicitation of the user requirements in close collaboration with the project end users, whereas it also monitors the technological adaptation of the EMPOWER tools towards reaching TRL 8. In addition, M4D is responsible for the further development of the clustering tool, originally built in STARLIGHT, organising large volumes of multimodal data in coherent groups, each focusing on a specific topic whilst being distinct from the rest of identified groups, with the goal to facilitate the automatic identification of material of interest within large datasets.