Absolute Secure Access Enhances Oregon State Police Officer Safety

Oregon State Police Improves Troubleshooting and Eliminates Connection Issues with Absolute Secure Access

The Oregon State Police (OSP) provides critical public safety services to citizens and public safety partners across the state of Oregon. To better serve the public, the police force needed to simplify secure access to networks and enable them to access information faster.

The Story

Keeping Officers Connected No Matter Where They Are

Oregon state troopers and other field employees regularly work from their vehicles, relying on public cellular networks to access central information systems and databases while on the road. However, weak and intermittent connectivity threatened the organization’s commitment to “be there” for the citizens of Oregon. In Eastern Oregon and other rural areas of the state, cellular coverage is often spotty or weak. For members of the OSP, a lost connection is a serious problem that puts their own safety at risk and negatively impacts call response times. Operating far beyond the reach of the IT support staff, officers would have to stop what they’re doing to try and reestablish a broken connection on their own.

OSP CIO Albert Gauthier wanted to find a way to keep officers connected. Ensuring that employees—regardless of their physical location or route—are connected to mission-critical systems was going to require a level of visibility OSP had never had before. Gauthier and his team began looking for a tool that would provide the details of individual cellular connections. The team wanted enough information to avoid known issues and quickly find the root of new problems, so they could provide fixes immediately.

Security Challenges

Patrol Time

Reduced IT
Support Tickets

Secure Access

"Absolute Secure Access is instrumental in helping IT staff articulate the need for hardware or software changes to management."


The Solutions

How They Did It

Addressing Network Problems to Improve Productivity

OSP, a long-time user of Absolute Secure Access, decided to evaluate the company’s latest solution, Absolute Insights for NetworkTM, which quickly pinpoints and analyzes the root causes of mobile connectivity and wireless networking problems to improve the productivity of mobile users. Impressed with the results, OSP proceeded with a statewide deployment. "Absolute Secure Access confirmed very quickly that we had areas of low bandwidth performance near the city of Bend,” added Gauthier. “Once we were able to document this issue repeatedly – using multiple officers traversing the region – we wanted to include our carrier in the conversation. Having aggregate data of this nature was particularly powerful."

Unparalleled Insights Increases Visibility for IT Teams

Using a small agent on mobile devices, the solution collects performance and location information, giving IT staff the ability to see the conditions their mobile field workers are experiencing. Using this data, the solution builds data coverage maps, generates detailed device, network, and application reports, tracks air card and modem usage, and exposes poor network performance. OSP shared a coverage report with its carrier, prompting an internal evaluation. The carrier confirmed the problem and informed OSP of plans to install three new tower sites across the region.

Improved Troubleshooting Helps Eliminate Connection Issues

The technology allows OSP to quickly determine the cause of cellular connectivity issues for individual users. Real-world data helps the IT team determine if the problem sits at the application, network, or device level. Being able to verify field performance is a critical factor for OSP, as it evaluates applications and devices against changing needs. It is also key to engaging carriers, as well as internal management, to coordinate and meet the team’s increased coverage needs. Using Absolute Secure Access, OSP plans to keep track of data consumption, so applications can be prioritized across the bandwidth that is available.

"Field officers should not worry about a call taking them to an area of poor coverage. Absolute Secure Access is invaluable for helping us defend against these instances. It ultimately enhances officer safety by giving them the information they need as they head into calls. Our IT staff has really noticed the support load reduction as well."


The Results

Secure Connectivity Keeps Officers Safe

The solution’s inventory control plays a big role in helping with connection issues. “When troubleshooting, it’s nice to be able to quickly view a device’s firmware and other details all in one place,” said Gauthier. “This product has been a boon for us; it provided really good value, really quickly. Overall, thanks to Absolute Secure Access, we’re a lot smarter and data-driven in the mobility-related decisions we make.

For OSP, Absolute Secure Access:

  • Increases patrol time for deputies
  • Simplifies access through single log-in
  • Reduces IT tickets through continuous connectivity
  • Centralizes management console for troubleshooting and monitoring

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