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2020

Interviews - 2020

Samuel Abbott, Software Trainer, Amped Software


  Posted Thursday March 19, 2020 (16:05:46)   (793 Reads)
Samuel Abbott
Samuel Abbott

Samuel, congratulations on your new role! Tell us more about your career with the Royal Military Police. How did you come to be a video analysis expert?

Thank you! It is a very exciting move for me. My career began in the Royal Military Police in 2014 where I first started out doing general police duties but then discovered a Multimedia & Evidential Imagery Team (MEIT) within the RMP, so I immediately applied to a selection process and successfully earned a spot on that team.

The team consisted of four RMP members and two civilians, together we worked on every multimedia evidence investigation for the Army, Navy and RAF worldwide.

We had a wide range of capabilities from CCTV recovery to video enhancement, crime scene reconstruction, laser scanning, and body injury mapping.

Whilst fairly new into the team I discovered LEVA, a non-profit corporation providing training and certification in the science of forensic video analysis. I was the first to attend the training and become a certified technician.

I continued to develop my video forensics capabilities in the following years and my final project within the RMP was to establish a new department for MEIT in the north of England.


How did you come to work for Amped? What about the role and the company excited you most?

Video forensics quickly became my preferred field of interest and after attending the Amped FIVE training and LEVA training, I ensured that for every video and imagery case that came to us we used FIVE.

I quickly fell in love with the software, it made my job a whole lot easier and the report saved me from hours and hours of paperwork (which I always hated).

Through training and various events I attended throughout my career at the RMP, I met many members of the Amped team, and each person I met had a genuine passion for the industry and for the company they worked for. And also, since I had a very high interest in video enhancement, when I saw a job posting for a position in Italy at Amped Software, I decided to apply immediately and then flew out to Italy for a job interview.

I really liked the team and what they stood for and felt like I could make a positive contribution to the team as well as continue to develop myself further.

The military requires you to give a year return of service after signing off so it took over a year to get out and join the team but I had kept in close contact with them throughout and knew it was the team I belonged in.

It is hard to narrow down ‘what excited me the most’ because every aspect is exciting. I have been able to move to Italy! I’m working within a team that produce the best video forensics software and has some of the leading video forensic experts. I am in a position where I can continue to develop further and travel the world training the future video forensic experts.


Tell us a bit about your role: what do you expect a day in your life as a trainer will look like?

I applied for the role of Software Trainer because I enjoyed training people in the military and felt that with my genuine passion for training, the software, and video forensics in general, I would be a good fit for the role.

But my role has become more fluid. I will be assisting with technical support, attending events, bug finding and also creating videos to help users get the most out of the software. I’m excited that I will be assisting the company in a diverse manner.


How do you anticipate your experience will help you as a trainer?

The military is amazing for instilling great qualities into its soldiers, especially discipline and leadership. I’ve had amazing experiences and some of my favourites have been the training elements which have been extremely varied.

I have trained the future members of MEIT and I’ve also trained a full battalion of infantry soldiers on captured persons techniques in the middle of Kenya. I hope that my adaptability and several qualities developed within the military will assist me in getting the most out of anyone I train in the future.


What about your career have you found most rewarding thus far?

I have always enjoyed helping others, it was my main reason for joining the military. The most rewarding part of my new career so far has been my contribution to the technical support team. I have been able to assist people worldwide with any problems they face with the software and ensure they get the results they need for positive convictions.


In your first year with Amped, what are you hoping to accomplish?

I hope within my first year I can contribute to the team significantly with my unique background. I want to establish myself as a core member of the team and further develop the software, adding important input from a user’s point of view.

Finally, another priority of mine will be to help build new relationships with other militaries around the world who would benefit from the software as I did.


In your opinion, what are the biggest challenges that investigators are facing, which vendors like Amped can help to overcome?

The biggest challenge I personally faced which Amped helped me overcome was finding a suitable software solution to the majority of the challenges I faced working with video and imagery.

Amped Software produces the best, most reliable, robust and intuitive software packages for video forensics.

I used Amped FIVE in thousands of cases and I was able to reliably depend on it. It helped me achieve a high success rate in producing evidence which contributed to positive convictions.

During my final year, I experienced an increase of authenticity cases coming through where images or videos had been tampered with. I believe this problem will continue to grow as editing video and images becomes more and more accessible to everyone with a smart phone. Luckily Amped Software developed the product Amped Authenticate, which I know continues to be developed to tackle this specific problem.


When you're not working, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

I really enjoy a vast interest in different hobbies. I spend most of my free time in the gym where I am either keeping fit or boxing. I am a big geek at heart and have a passion for computers and gaming which also takes a fair chunk of my time. I am starting two new hobbies with colleagues from work, Ju-Jitsu and Tango. Whilst in the military I completed certifications in sailing, so I hope to find time this year to sail. Lastly, I enjoy adventures and exploring, and being in a new country, I know there is a lot more of that to come!

 

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