Technology is rapidly evolving and emergent technologies have an important part to play in modern policing.
Police staff increasingly use new technology in day-to-day work, such as CCTV and Automatic Number Plate Recognition on some cars. Technology is essential to our business, it enables us to police more effectively and efficiently, and supports innovation in our work.
While innovation is critical to delivering the police service people deserve and expect, Police is committed to ensuring we first understand and assess potential technology and its implications before testing or adopting it.
It is our duty to ensure that privacy, ethical, and human rights implications have been taken into account before decisions are made to pilot or introduce new technology capabilities. We police with the consent of our communities and it is vital they have trust and confidence in the way we police.
Using emergent technologies
To ensure appropriate consideration ahead of the trial or use of new technology capabilities, a policy was developed for Police proposals to test or trial use of emergent technologies. This also applies in situations where extra functionality is being added to an existing technology.
You can find more on Police’s use policy here.
You can read our media release from when the policy was launched here.
Police has formally signed up to the Algorithm Charter for Aotearoa New Zealand, which outlines standards for the safe and ethical use of algorithms by public sector organisations.
More information about the Algorithm Charter is available at www.data.govt.nz.
You can view Police’s signatory to the Charter here.
Advisory panel on emergent technologies
Police has an external, independent, expert panel to provide advice and oversight from an ethical and policy perspective of emergent technologies.
The expert panel operates as a reference group to which we will refer proposed policing applications of new and emergent technology (or significant enhancements of existing technology-enabled capabilities) on an as-needs basis.
The panel’s primary role is to provide advice and oversight from an ethical and policy perspective of emergent technologies. While advice will be received and considered in confidence, Police is committed to making the expert panel’s advice public wherever possible - acknowledging this may not be possible in every case, for example where disclosure would breach commercial obligations.
This panel supports Police’s commitment to carefully weigh privacy, security, and ethical consideration before looking at adding to its technology-enabled capabilities.
This will help provide assurance to the public that any major decision has been well considered and tested through an independent group.
Biographies of the panel
Professor Colin Gavaghan
Kirikowhai Mikaere (Tūhourangi, Ngāti Whakaue - Te Arawa)
Dr Marion Oswald
Professor Michael Macaulay
Associate Professor Khylee Quince (Ngapuhi/Te Roroa/Ngāti Porou/Ngāti Kahungungu)
Professor Jennifer Brown
Questions and answers
What is emergent technology?
How do I get more information?