IT | Security

Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service Protects Data and Devices with Absolute

By: Ray Powell | 4/15/2020

Fire crews depend heavily on data when responding to emergencies – just ask the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service (DWFRS).

To effectively secure their communities and their responding firefighters, the unit relies on Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 devices across its fleet of fire trucks: a fixed Toughbook mounted in the front, and a demountable one in the back. They are used for critical incident communication back to the Control Room, as well as essential risk information when responding to incidents such as vehicle schematics, chemical and hazardous materials databases, water supplies, survey mapping, essential operational information and more.

DWFRS has 50 fire stations serving local communities in the counties of Dorset and Wiltshire, England and crews are available to respond to emergency calls 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Devices used to support emergency response proved hard to track, however, and there was always risk of theft or unintended loss. For effective and secure emergency response, DWFRS knew they needed to protect not only their devices but also the valuable and sensitive data that resides on those devices.

Already There, Always On Absolute Persistence

“For me, deploying Absolute is about assurance. I don’t have to worry. I get alerts when a device leaves a boundary and alerts if someone is using too much data on hard drive. Absolute lets me report back that if we are ever in a situation, I have the confidence that I can remote freeze it,” said Daniel Grew, Mobile Data Technology Manager at DWFRS.

Absolute’s patented Persistence technology provides DWFRS with a single source of truth for the protection of their life-saving devices and the sensitive data that resides on them. And because Absolute was already embedded in the BIOS of the Panasonic Toughbooks that DWFRS firefighters were using, activation and time to value were quick.

“The real difference for me was that Absolute’s Persistence technology cannot be uninstalled.  If a device is lost and someone tries to wipe the operating system and install a new one, Absolute reinstalls itself. I can track and freeze every device no matter what happens to it,” said Grew.

For more on how DWFRS secures their mobile devices during emergency response, download the full case study.