Active RFID tags used to power new concept in prison security

April 2006 Asset Management

Transquest Tag & Tracing Solutions, a Netherlands-based channel partner of Wavetrend, has developed an innovative system for prison security, commissioned by the Dutch Department of Justice (DOJ). The system under construction at a completely new detention centre in Lelystad will track prisoners' movements using active RFID bracelets supplied by Wavetrend.

Whereas active RFID has been used in the US for control purposes, the Transquest solution monitors the positions of prisoners within the prison compound at all times. Inmates are equipped with non-removable bracelets incorporating anti-tamper alarms which transmit a signal every 1,5 seconds, identifying both themselves and their position. These signals are read in zones by Wavetrend's Long Range RFID reader network, providing complete coverage of the prison, and fed into SmartTag software supplied by Transquest's partner: Advanced Positioning Systems (APS).

Each day, prisoners log on to the system with their inmate bracelet to identify themselves and create their individual day programme, dividing time between work, sport and recreation activities. Once this programme has been validated by DOJ systems, it is automatically transferred to Tranquest's system to authorise the necessary accesses within the prison compound. Adherence to the programme is monitored in realtime with prisoners earning credit for good behaviour. Alarms are generated if prisoners are not present in the zones prescribed by their day programme.

Guards are able to check on the movements of inmates and are instantly alerted to deviations from pre-planned programmes on PDAs integrated into the system's software. They are also equipped with key fob tags with a panic button, which, in the case of an alarm, alerts the control room to the identity and position of the endangered guard.

The implementation was achieved within budget and the time schedule set by the DOJ. The system will decrease the operational costs of managing detainees and increase prison capacity.

Chris Bishop, CEO of Wavetrend comments, "We are delighted to have supplied the active RFID tags and readers which power this highly innovative concept. It provides yet another example of the benefits of working closely with our channel partners to tackle challenging problems and provide solutions with substantial commercial benefits."

For more information contact Bonita Read, Wavetrend Technologies, 011 462 2633, [email protected],

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