Griffith Uni data lab goes live.
Queensland Police will give researchers access to de-identified data on individual criminals as part of a newly-established social analytics laboratory at Griffith University.
The university’s $1 million data lab was officially launched today after being approved by the state government in 2015.
It will study de-identified data from the police service’s core QPRIME crimes database in an effort to provide a “safer Queensland”, police minister Mark Ryan said.
He said allowing independent researchers to access and analyse police crime data was “critical for our communities to know what types of crime are occurring in their area and what preventative measures can be taken to reduce those incidents”.
Queensland Police commissioner Ian Stewart said QPS would provide the lab with “de-identified individual level crime data” from 2008 to 2017.
“Being able to access this amount of data will enhance the work of Griffith University researchers and their development of evidence-based findings,” Stewart said in a statement.
“The research conducted from it will inevitably improve our strategies for future policing, community safety and crime prevention in Queensland.”
Researchers in the lab will use analytics to identify patterns and insights; initial use cases for the data are to work out trends in burglary and car crime to help inform operational policing.
It comes as the federal government attempts to introduce laws that would criminalise those who point out badly de-identified government datasets.
The move was prompted by a data breach at the Department of Health last year. The subsequent draft Privacy Amendment (Re-identification Offence) Bill 2016 would see individuals and businesses who re-identify open public sector data face up to two years jail and hefty fines. The bill exempts government agencies and their service providers.