ALEISS uses an off-the-shelf software called CopLink. This software collects, consolidates, and shares information from existing law enforcement records management systems. Officers enter data into their own records management system, and these data are then uploaded daily via a secure, Internet-based platform that links databases. Various search strategies can be used to look for links between ongoing investigations. Investigators in the various ALEISS agencies can search the interconnected databases in a matter of minutes in order to find any connections between suspects and investigations. One special feature is the ability to flag an individual in the database. If new data on the flagged person are added, an alert is sent to the interested investigators. CopLink has advanced firewalls, encrypted transmission, and secure dual-user access authentication. For its first 3 years of operation ALEISS was sponsored by the U.S. Justice Department's National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and its National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center-Northwest. The International Association of Chiefs of Police presented ALEISS with its 2005 Excellence in Technology Award for Regional and Collaborative Systems. Those involved in the development of ALEISS advise that other States and agencies could use CopLink or other similar commercially available programs in order to enable the sharing of information across multiple agencies and regions.