The Virtual Forge

Green Residential Parking Pricing

This service allows local authorities to incentivise green vehicle adoption through variable parking permit prices. Our algorithms create a unique per-vehicle permit price based on attributes that matter most to each council, such as C02 and N0x emissions, vehicle age, size, fuel type and weight. This rewards greener vehicle choices.

Features

  • Dynamic parking pricing based on key vehicle characteristics
  • Data lookup and analytics
  • Incentivising cleaner vehicle choices by differential pricing mechanisms
  • Local Authority/resident engagement
  • Help for poorer or disadvantaged groups
  • Integration with existing systems
  • Data- and research-driven decisions
  • Advice and consultation on carbon incentives

Benefits

  • Incentivises the uptake of lower emission vehicles
  • Improves road space management by incentivising smaller vehicle use
  • Improves Local Authority/resident engagement on parking
  • Accurately captures and prices negative externalities of vehicle use
  • Drives improvements in air quality
  • Drives reduction in road traffic noise
  • Drives reduction in highway damage by incentivising smaller, lighter vehicles

Pricing

£2 to £10 a transaction

  • Free trial available

Service documents

Framework

G-Cloud 12

Service ID

3 7 7 6 7 0 1 6 2 1 6 8 2 1 5

Contact

The Virtual Forge The VF Team
Telephone: +44 (0) 207 078 8855
Email: info@thevirtualforge.com

Service scope

Software add-on or extension
Yes, but can also be used as a standalone service
What software services is the service an extension to
This service can be an extension to any existing parking permit issuance system or app. We operate this service independently, and it can be connected to any system with API communication accessibility. Additionally, custom implementations or standalone solutions are possible.
Cloud deployment model
  • Public cloud
  • Private cloud
  • Hybrid cloud
Service constraints
Service designed around Local Authority requirements, uptime is guaranteed at 99% allowing time for maintenance or unplanned outages. Support is limited to P1 critical issues out of hours only. In hours support 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday
System requirements
  • API connectivity in parking permit issuance system
  • Permission to use vehicle registration mark of residents

User support

Email or online ticketing support
Email or online ticketing
Support response times
Support response times P1 - Critical - 2 hours P2 - High - 4 hours P3 - Medium - 8 hours P4 - Low - 24 hours UK hours 8am - 9pm. Out of hours support for P1 only.
User can manage status and priority of support tickets
No
Phone support
Yes
Phone support availability
9 to 5 (UK time), Monday to Friday
Web chat support
No
Onsite support
No
Support levels
Priority levels set out below. Clients can opt to have support out of hours for premium level, however this is for P1 only. Priority 1 / Urgent Service down; unusable by all parties, Priority 2 / High Major problem; system is functioning but severely affecting all parties. Priority 2 problems may be fixed with a workaround. If a workaround is provided, the priority level may be downgraded to Priority 3. Priority 3 / Medium Minor problem; system is functioning and workaround is available. One or some parties affected, Priority 3 parties may be resolved with a fix or workaround. Priority 4 / Low Minor problem; system functioning or only issue affecting one party. General questions or queries relating to the service or new products.
Support available to third parties
No

Onboarding and offboarding

Getting started
Online documentation and email support. Any issues are raised via our Helpdesk
Service documentation
Yes
Documentation formats
  • HTML
  • PDF
End-of-contract data extraction
Response data is produced per-request by our service API. Our service therefore does not typically maintain and store client data, and therefore data extraction does not generally happen at end-of-contract.

With appropriate agreements and terms in place, we are able to store relevant vehicle lookup data and return this to clients upon request. These terms, including which data is stored and can be extracted, are client-dependent.
End-of-contract process
If the client wishes to stop using our service, access to our API will end and requests will be denied.

As an extra-cost service, we can work with new vendors to assist with transition. This can involve working with another vendor to create and implement a full transition plan to minimise downtown for clients.

Using the service

Web browser interface
No
Application to install
No
Designed for use on mobile devices
No
Service interface
No
API
Yes
What users can and can't do using the API
Our service is provided via API access for clients. In a typical use case, we would be informed of a council's desired pricing weights (or can consult on these) for different vehicle attributes. With this information already known by our service, users can send a request with a registered vehicle's VRM, and will receive back a parking permit price for that vehicle (with an option of receiving a full breakdown of different components in the pricing calculation).

For councils requiring the ability to change their pricing structure regularly, API requests can also include weights for each desired vehicle attribute, which will be used in the pricing calculation for that vehicle's permit.
API documentation
Yes
API documentation formats
  • HTML
  • PDF
API sandbox or test environment
Yes
Customisation available
Yes
Description of customisation
The system can be tailored to each local authority's requirements. Some examples of customisation include the following:
- Which attributes to include in price calculations
- How to weight these attributes
- How to handle missing data for pricing components
- Which values to receive back from API calls
- Vehicle lookup method (VRM or vehicle year, make, model)

Scaling

Independence of resources
We create a private cloud-based virtual system for each client. This ensures that systems can easily scale, and that only users of the client's service will be 'competing' for resource. It is unlikely there will be significant simultaneous demand for our service for a client at one time, but our systems are built to scale and handle tens of thousands of simultaneous users if necessary.

Analytics

Service usage metrics
Yes
Metrics types
We provide standard API metrics, including number of requests, average response times, etc.
Reporting types
Reports on request

Resellers

Supplier type
Not a reseller

Staff security

Staff security clearance
Staff screening not performed
Government security clearance
Up to Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS)

Asset protection

Knowledge of data storage and processing locations
Yes
Data storage and processing locations
  • United Kingdom
  • European Economic Area (EEA)
User control over data storage and processing locations
No
Datacentre security standards
Managed by a third party
Penetration testing frequency
At least every 6 months
Penetration testing approach
In-house
Protecting data at rest
Encryption of all physical media
Data sanitisation process
Yes
Data sanitisation type
Deleted data can’t be directly accessed
Equipment disposal approach
Complying with a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v.30, CAS (Sanitisation) or ISO/IEC 27001

Data importing and exporting

Data export approach
N/A
Data export formats
Other
Data import formats
Other
Other data import formats
Data is typically received by our service via API requests

Data-in-transit protection

Data protection between buyer and supplier networks
TLS (version 1.2 or above)
Data protection within supplier network
TLS (version 1.2 or above)

Availability and resilience

Guaranteed availability
Use infrastructure assuring 99.9% uptime
Approach to resilience
We make extensive use of AWS's native resiliency and redundancy capabilities through leveraging multiple Availability Zones through load balancers for servers and (where possible) distributed databases or read replicas. This is further supported by 'warm' backup regions in case of a disaster recovery scenario. Details of Amazon SLA's can be found here; https://aws.amazon.com/compute/sla/
Outage reporting
Public dashboard Email alerts Text messages

Identity and authentication

User authentication needed
Yes
User authentication
  • 2-factor authentication
  • Public key authentication (including by TLS client certificate)
  • Identity federation with existing provider (for example Google Apps)
  • Username or password
Access restrictions in management interfaces and support channels
Username and password. Resets only available directly to user via their email.
Access restriction testing frequency
At least once a year
Management access authentication
  • 2-factor authentication
  • Public key authentication (including by TLS client certificate)
  • Username or password

Audit information for users

Access to user activity audit information
Users contact the support team to get audit information
How long user audit data is stored for
At least 12 months
Access to supplier activity audit information
Users contact the support team to get audit information
How long supplier audit data is stored for
At least 12 months
How long system logs are stored for
At least 12 months

Standards and certifications

ISO/IEC 27001 certification
Yes
Who accredited the ISO/IEC 27001
British Assessment Bureau
ISO/IEC 27001 accreditation date
07/01/2020
What the ISO/IEC 27001 doesn’t cover
-
ISO 28000:2007 certification
No
CSA STAR certification
No
PCI certification
No
Other security certifications
No

Security governance

Named board-level person responsible for service security
Yes
Security governance certified
Yes
Security governance standards
ISO/IEC 27001
Information security policies and processes
Company Information Security Policy must be signed by all employees, and is updated regularly. CTO – The company’s Chief Technology Officer is responsible for corporate-wide IS system planning, implementation, and execution. Information Security Manager – The IS Manager is responsible for the company-wide datacenter and network infrastructures. DevOps Engineers – The DevOps Engineers are responsible for all enterprise business systems. Internal Users -- All members of the the company User Community are required to familiarise themselves with the policies outlined in the The Company Employee and Contractor IS Policies document.

Operational security

Configuration and change management standard
Supplier-defined controls
Configuration and change management approach
Changes are managed via the change control process to ensure projects remain within approved constraints. Change proposals are agreed with the client, completed by the individual who identifies the need for a change, then submitted to us. The project team then assesses the impact of the change. The request is submitted to the change control board with the project team's findings to be reviewed. If the change is approved, all project documentation must be updated and the change must be communicated to all stakeholders. Some changes may also require re-alignment of the project costs, schedule, or scope.
Vulnerability management type
Conforms to a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v3.0 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Vulnerability management approach
Threats are monitored using an IDS provided by AWS along with the standard protection offered by AWS. Patches are routinely applied with urgent hotfixes applied the same day as a threat is identified. Threat information is monitored from AWS and industry leading security boards and alert feeds.
Protective monitoring type
Conforms to a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v3.0 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Protective monitoring approach
This is managed by AWS on our behalf.
Incident management type
Supplier-defined controls
Incident management approach
Incidents are managed via a ticketing system. Information and FAQs are available via the ticketing system to help with common issues. Canned responses are prepared for common issues. Users report incidents via email or through ticket portal. Responses are given according to pre-defined SLAs. RCAs are available for critical issues. Ticket reports are available at client request.

Secure development

Approach to secure software development best practice
Independent review of processes (for example CESG CPA Build Standard, ISO/IEC 27034, ISO/IEC 27001 or CSA CCM v3.0)

Public sector networks

Connection to public sector networks
No

Pricing

Price
£2 to £10 a transaction
Discount for educational organisations
No
Free trial available
Yes
Description of free trial
We can provide limited trial API access to assess usability by clients. Trial lookups will be limited in time and scope, and trial access will vary by client.

Service documents