The Hansken Upscaling and Chain Implementation programme (Opschaling en Ketenimplementatie Hansken, in brief: OK Hansken) was launched with a kick-off meeting on Thursday 16 January 2020. Annemieke de Vries (Deputy CEO, NFI) gave the green light for the programme at this meeting, in the presence of representatives from the Police, Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority, Fiscal Intelligence and Investigation Service (FIOD), Royal Netherlands Marechaussee, Inspectorate SZW, Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate, Public Prosecution Service and Ministry of Justice & Security.

Kick off Hansken programma
Annemieke de Vries (Deputy CEO, NFI) kicked off the OK Hansken programme.

The participating organisations have joined forces to form the ‘Hansken Community’ and they will jointly devote themselves to developing the product (the forensic search engine) further and sharing digital forensic knowledge. The FIOD emphasises that the world is changing at a rapid pace. 'Digital investigations cannot and should not lag behind, we must continue to innovate and listen properly to the end users. It is time to develop a platform via which investigations can examine and analyse large amounts of data in a user-friendly manner.'

An important cornerstone of this programme is the increased use of this digital forensic platform both nationally and internationally. The organisations will share knowledge and expertise on a regular basis in order to continue improving Hansken in the future. All of this is driven by the objective of increasing our investigative capabilities.

Martijn Egberts (National Cyber Officer of the Public Prosecution Service) expressed the importance of the programme as follows: 'It offers us the opportunity to investigate digital evidence in a professional manner. In addition, there are also solutions for thoroughly counterchecking the secured evidence. And this is extremely important, because more and more evidence is being collected in digital form.'

Hansken Community

Investigative bodies from Sweden, Norway, Germany and Spain have already indicated that they are greatly interested in working with Hansken. They want to contribute to this Community that aims to develop Hansken further and share the knowledge used in the Hansken programme. 'We are ambitious. In collaboration with the various investigative services in Europe and the academic world, we will be able to shape future developments with full confidence', says Katja van Hoever (Information Manager, Police).

In her speech, De Vries indicated that she is happy and proud of the NFI’s role in setting up the forensic search engines Xiraf and Hansken. 'At the start, it was a period of pioneering, improvising and innovation. But now there is a robust product at an early stage of maturity. Hansken has already proven its value for the chain in various criminal investigations and lawsuits.'

Signing of a cooperation agreement

All the parties present will shortly sign a cooperation agreement committing themselves to the further joint development of Hansken and the sharing of knowledge. After all, the Community’s motto is: ‘Stronger together by sharing knowledge’.