How Tech is impacting on the investigation sector

How technology is impacting on the investigation sector


Digital transformation is impacting on all industries, private and public, and investigation agencies are no exception. As a result, the Australian Government Investigations Standards (AGIS) was updated in October 2022 to reflect, in part, the increasing use of digital evidence. Paper-filled binders and physical evidence are rare these days; most, if not all case evidence is handled electronically, and the management of digital evidence presents its own set of challenges. For example, depending on the size of the investigation, the amount of data that’s collected can be huge. Managed properly, that data can be analysed to provide intelligent investigative insights rather than viewed as an annoyance factor that hinders investigations.

The importance of effective digital evidence management

Despite the fact that paper-based evidence management systems are on their way out, the adoption of digital evidence management systems remains in its infancy, with most entities yet to consolidate evidence into one secure system. Those that have invested in innovation are reaping the rewards of significant time savings, while streamlining their investigation processes and delivering high quality briefs of evidence or investigation reports.

With the right investigation management platform on board, your agency will significantly improve the way it organises and manages evidence. However, if you’re still relying on disparate systems, you’ll be experiencing inefficiencies around handling evidence – you might even be impairing court hearings and delaying critical decisions.

The reality is that increasingly, digital transformation is a feature of court rooms, meaning that anyone involved must consolidate their evidence digitally, and that means having the right software onboard to present digital evidence appropriately, through one secure software system.

2022 Australian Government Investigations Standards – five key takeaways

The management of digital evidence is a key factor the 2022 AGIS aims to address. However, it’s not the only one. With the recent update, there are significant changes to how investigation activity is managed. To help you make sense of it, we’ve developed a guide that outlines the five key takeaways for regulatory and investigative entities:

  1. Accountability – if investigative entities don’t adhere to all legislative requirements, evidence is at risk of being mismanaged, which may render it inadmissible
  2. Quality assurance – transparency and the need to meet professional standards are crucial for decision-making and case management
  3. Foundational competencies – there’s a minimum level of competency when it comes to investigative work such as planning, conducting, organising, and analysing investigations, and all entities have to document how their processes meet – or exceed – that level
  4. Managing digital evidence – as we’ve discussed, with the rise of digital transformation in court rooms, the effective management of digital evidence is essential
  5. Electronic investigation management systems (EIMS) – to ensure all case and investigations remain secure and aligned with the 2022 AGIS, all entities must implement an EIMS

The 2022 AGIS were modified to keep up with the ever-changing rigors of the digital age. Investigative entities need to recognise the need to innovate, by harnessing evidence management systems that can manage and present digital evidence in a professional and efficient way.

The Comtrac solution offers advanced investigation, evidence and digital brief management functionality to truly simplify evidence handling and presentation, and is ideal if your agency is struggling with many disparate investigation practices. Comtrac brings it all together in one secure and consistent investigation management system, and is suitable for any type of investigation – including criminal, civil, administrative or disciplinary.

Discover how the 2022 AGIS impacts both investigation and regulation activity: