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Two private equity firms just created the largest private provider of public safety services in the US

Bain Capital and Vista Equity Partners, two multi-billion-dollar private equity firms, have just created a company providing software and services for public safety and government management whose technology touches roughly three-fourths of the U.S. population. By merging TriTech Software Services , a technology provider to first responders across the country;  Superion , which sells emergency management and back office software for government operations (including billing and payments); and the public sector and healthcare businesses of Aptean, Bain and Vista have created a juggernaut that dominates public sector services, from policing to paying parking tickets, without any government oversight. However, many of the new technologies the company touts have come under fire from some police departments and civil liberties advocates. The new business, which will be run by Superion’s chief executive,  Simon Angove , will continue to offer the same suite of services it had in the past, and will use a new, undisclosed infusion of equity and debt from Bain and Vista to develop new products and services to bring to market. In all, the revenue of the combined company will be roughly $400 million, according to a person familiar with the transaction.  About two-thirds of the revenue of the combined companies will come from providing software and services to public safety departments, like police, fire and emergency services. In an interview, Angove touted the benefits of consolidating the operations of the three businesses. “ This puts us in a great position in 5,500 communities… across America,” says Angove. “Three out of every four citizens are protected by this software.” With the consolidation of the businesses, Angove says that police departments will be able to share information across jurisdictions. “We have a much larger data set that we can mine for criminal patterns,” says Angove. “And the ability to share dispatch across jurisdictional areas. We have the opportunity to reduce the time it takes to respond to an emergency. We have the ability to hand off that dispatch.” In a statement, the company said that the public safety business will focus on integrating devices that detect active shooters with emergency response systems; forecasting and preventing crimes through smarter patrolling; and advancing analytics that help measure and improve public safety

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Two private equity firms just created the largest private provider of public safety services in the US

Bain Capital and Vista Equity Partners, two multi-billion-dollar private equity firms, have just created a company providing software and services for public safety and government management whose technology touches roughly three-fourths of the U.S. population. By merging TriTech Software Services , a technology provider to first responders across the country;  Superion , which sells emergency management and back office software for government operations (including billing and payments); and the public sector and healthcare businesses of Aptean, Bain and Vista have created a juggernaut that dominates public sector services, from policing to paying parking tickets, without any government oversight. However, many of the new technologies the company touts have come under fire from some police departments and civil liberties advocates. The new business, which will be run by Superion’s chief executive,  Simon Angove , will continue to offer the same suite of services it had in the past, and will use a new, undisclosed infusion of equity and debt from Bain and Vista to develop new products and services to bring to market. In all, the revenue of the combined company will be roughly $400 million, according to a person familiar with the transaction.  About two-thirds of the revenue of the combined companies will come from providing software and services to public safety departments, like police, fire and emergency services. In an interview, Angove touted the benefits of consolidating the operations of the three businesses. “ This puts us in a great position in 5,500 communities… across America,” says Angove. “Three out of every four citizens are protected by this software.” With the consolidation of the businesses, Angove says that police departments will be able to share information across jurisdictions. “We have a much larger data set that we can mine for criminal patterns,” says Angove. “And the ability to share dispatch across jurisdictional areas. We have the opportunity to reduce the time it takes to respond to an emergency. We have the ability to hand off that dispatch.” In a statement, the company said that the public safety business will focus on integrating devices that detect active shooters with emergency response systems; forecasting and preventing crimes through smarter patrolling; and advancing analytics that help measure and improve public safety. Photo: bjdlzx/Getty Images That kind of future-forward, technology-centric policing was rejected in Oakland and is under review in other cities around the country, due to concerns about the utility of the algorithms and concerns over institutionalizing bias through faulty technology

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Purdue’s PHADE technology lets cameras ‘talk’ to you

It’s become almost second nature to accept that cameras everywhere — from streets, to museums and shops — are watching you, but now they may be able to communicate with you, as well. New technology from Purdue University computer science researchers has made this dystopian prospect a reality in a new paper published today . But, they argue, it’s safer than you might think. The system is called PHADE, which allows for something called “private human addressing,” where camera systems and individual cell phones can communicate without transmitting any personal data, like an IP or Mac address. Instead of using an IP or Mac address, the technology relies on motion patterns for the address code. That way, even if a hacker intercepts it, they won’t be able to access the person’s physical location. Imagine you’re strolling through a museum and an unfamiliar painting catches your eye. The docents are busy with a tour group far across the gallery and you didn’t pay extra for the clunky recorder and headphones for an audio tour. While pondering the brushwork you feel your phone buzz, and suddenly a detailed description of the artwork and its painter is in the palm of your hand. To achieve this effect, researchers use an approach similar to the kind of directional audio experience you might find at theme parks. Through processing the live video data, the technology is able to identify the individual motion patterns of pedestrians and when they are within a pertinent range — say, in front of a painting. From there they can broadcast a packet of information linked to the motion address of the pedestrian. When the user’s phone identifies that the motion address matches their own, the message is received. While this tech can be used to better inform the casual museum-goer, the researchers also believe it has a role in protecting pedestrians from crime in their area

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