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Kuwait's Ministry of Justice Assesses RFID File Tracking

The system uses EPC Gen 2 passive UHF RFID tags to track the locations and movements of legal files at the ministry's Justice Palace in Kuwait City.
By Claire Swedberg
Jan 29, 2016

When a court case is filed at the Kuwait Ministry of Justice's Justice Palace in Kuwait City, court employees can find the paperwork related to that case by signing into software and viewing the documents' last known location. The technology was provided by Litum Technologies and its local partner, Innovative Solutions, a startup owned by Adeem Investment.

The office handles thousands of new cases every month, each of which requires a file consisting of a folder filled with paperwork to be processed, reviewed and brought to court, and then eventually stored in the archives. The ministry employs approximately 200 carriers whose sole job is to bring files from one location or department to another. In addition, other ministry personnel sometimes move files to other offices or leave the building with them. Because the files are often on the move, finding them when they are needed has been difficult, and in some cases, a folder was found, but its paperwork was missing. This has caused serious problems when those documents were necessary for a case's prosecution or defense.

Ministry of Justice's Sulaiman Al-Mansour
What's more, a file can take six hours to several days to reach its destination, such as the desk of the attorney who requested it. Until that file arrives, the court had no information about who has it and where it is located.

The Ministry of Justice's staff, therefore, had spent a lot of time simply searching for folders and, in some cases, their paperwork, says Sulaiman Al-Mansour, the ministry's operation department manager. That slow process has led to delays to legal proceedings inside the courts, he explains.

Consequently, the ministry opted to launch an RFID-based system to gain a view into where files are located, including an alert being triggered if a file leaves the Justice Palace. "The system currently is in phase one," Al-Mansour says. "We are looking forward to extending the system to cover all court sites, and to expand it in our legal departments in the coming phases."

Litum provided the hardware and software for the system, while Innovative Solutions installed the technology. The ministry began working with Innovative Solutions about one year ago, says Ahmed Hassan, Innovative Solutions' executive director. The company and Litum had already provided the ministry with an RFID-based asset-management system consisting of EPC Gen 2 passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID tags attached to such items as IT equipment, which would then be tracked using a handheld reader.

In the case of file tracking, however, the ministry needed to find and manage the movements of millions of folders, as well as the paperwork contained within, and it required fixed readers to make it possible to automatically collect location information as the files were moved to key areas, such as a clerk's or lawyer's desk, or through doorways. "We designed the system to track the movement of files until they go to court," Hassan states.

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