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Geographic Profiling


(Summer 2004) – Software capabilities represent an important tool in the hunt for those who commit violent crimes from hidden locations. Environmental Criminology Research Inc. (ECRI) of Vancouver, B.C., has been awarded a contract under the U.S. Government’s National Technology Alliance (NTA) program to evaluate and extend the company’s Rigel geographic profiling system to support the Global War on Terror.

Geographic profiling is an advanced crime analysis technique originally developed at Simon Fraser University and the Vancouver Police Department. Using evidence collected during the course of an investigation, geographic profiling techniques can be used to predict the most probable home base of serial criminals or terrorists based on the geographic pattern of crime sites.

The success of geographic profiling in solving civilian crimes is well established. It has been used in over 700 violent crimes worldwide over the last decade.

ECRI has been supplying the Rigel geographic profiling system to police agencies throughout North America and Europe since 1987, including the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the U.K. Home Office, and German Federal Police. The NTA program is administered by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA formerly NIMA, the National Imagery and Mapping Agency).

The primary goal of the NTA is to accelerate the development of commercial technology to meet the needs of government by leveraging the cost of development across a broad user community.

In February 2002, NGA awarded a procurement agreement to the Rosettex Technology and Ventures Group, a joint venture formed by Sarnoff Corporation (Princeton, NJ) and SRI International (Menlo Park, CA) to address user technology needs in Geospatial Intelligence; Information Processing, Analysis and Management; and Digital Technology Infrastructure.

Rosettex has assembled a team of over 70 leading research universities, institutes, laboratories and commercial companies, with facilities in 34 states and across the globe, to support the NTA. ECRI is working under subcontract to Swiftsure Spatial Systems of Victoria, B.C., which is a Rosettex partner.


ECRI is a Vancouver-based company founded in 1994 to develop geographic profiling systems, primarily for criminal investigation. The company’s main customers are local, regional, and national police agencies. ECRI’s Rigel system is used by professional geographic profilers throughout the world. About the NTA The National Technology Alliance (NTA) is a U. S. Government program established in 1987 to influence commercial and dual-use technology development. The NTA’s purpose is to discover, initiate or accelerate commercial technology development to meet U.S. national security and defense technology needs. The National-Geospatial Intelligence Agency serves as the Executive Agent of the NTA on behalf of the U.S. Government. For more information about the NTA, visit


Rosettex Technology & Ventures Group, based in Rosslyn, Virginia, translates research and developmental technology into solutions using a unique business model. Rosettex has assembled a team of 70 partners representing major technology consulting firms, established and new companies, independent research institutes, premier academic institutes and government contractors. Rosettex includes the Rosettex Venture Fund, a venture capital fund that invests in technologies, products, and companies that address broad national security needs. For more information, visit the Web site at About Swiftsure Spatial Systems Swiftsure Spatial Systems Inc is an information management consulting firm based in Victoria, BC. Swiftsure specializes in business analysis with a strong spatial or temporal component. For more information, please contact:

Ian Laverty
Environmental Criminology Research Inc.
Phone: (604)718-2060


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