Unilink Software Ltd

Biometric self-service case management for secure training centres

Unilink’s CMS enables secure training centres to run efficiently with the option of students carrying out self-service in-cell, or on wing-based kiosks. The combined biometric case management and self-service application allows students to take responsibility, improving their chances of rehabilitation; integrates with ‘emailaprisoner’ and ‘epayments’, enhancing friends/family contact.


  • Biometric tracking for young people, visitors and staff ensuring security
  • Unique system incorporating both case management and self-service
  • Combined young people management and self-service system for STC
  • Delivered through wing-based kiosks, in-cell devices, tablets and thin clients
  • Extensive range of functional modules covering all daily student transactions
  • Automated secure links for friends/family, allowing for messaging and e-payments
  • Keep apart markers used with scheduling of STC activities
  • Security accredited to IL3 with secure remote support
  • Operational data stored in SQL databases for analytics/ reports
  • Single solution including secure Azure cloud hosting


  • Enables safer STCs, allowing management to focus on delivering education
  • Digitalises almost all young people transactions, saving SCO time
  • Money savings: staff time, reduced administration, reduced food wastage/paper reductions
  • Contact with friends and family is enhanced, which aids rehabilitation
  • Time booking visits eliminated as young people can self-service book
  • Activity reports enable management to identify young people in need
  • Helps young people to take more responsibility for their lives
  • Time management reports and self-service surveys aid daily STC operation
  • Scheduling tools, combined with keep-apart markers, aid safety
  • Payments linked to schedules and biometric tracking save staff time


£0.45 to £0.95 per person per day

  • Free trial available

Service documents

G-Cloud 10


Unilink Software Ltd

Zaneta Whitworth

020 7036 3810


Service scope

Service scope
Software add-on or extension No
Cloud deployment model Private cloud
Service constraints The service has been designed to limit constraints, however, the service constraints will be largely dependent upon the client's the chosen G-Cloud PaaS Hosting Provider
System requirements
  • Secure Windows or Android Terminal with anti-vius
  • Windows SQL cloud infrstructure
  • Available utilising Azure as a value added option

User support

User support
Email or online ticketing support Email or online ticketing
Support response times 1 hour but normally less
Users can log their support calls using the online portal and review their current status. Users cannot change their ticket priority, as this is determined by Unilink. Typically users do not use the online portal, rather they submit issues via email to the 24/7/365 Unilink helpdesk. This results in an improved service as any fault is correctly categorised and therefore resolved more quickly.
User can manage status and priority of support tickets No
Phone support Yes
Phone support availability 24 hours, 7 days a week
Web chat support Web chat
Web chat support availability 24 hours, 7 days a week
Web chat support accessibility standard WCAG 2.0 A
Web chat accessibility testing Chat testing was performed during the development stage and continually refined through user feedback from over 60 successful deployments.
Onsite support Onsite support
Support levels Service Support is offered through UK-based security cleared staff working within a ITILv3 Service Support model.
Service Level Agreements are negotiated directly with Unilink to achieve customer objectives of service availability, recovery time and backup objectives.
The Unilink Service Desk is the principal point of contact for all service users. Unilink currently provides ITIL aligned support services to Sodexo, Serco, G4S, Hampshire Constabulary and several other Police Forces, working closely alongside other outsourced Service Providers. This functional service is responsible for the Incident Management process and is also a key communications point for receiving and disseminating operational information to Unilink’s customers. Unilink is very experienced in working alongside customer Change and Release teams to deliver a seamless managed Service.
Support is provided through a combination of Service desk, Email, Phone, Live chat and Onsite.

“Unilink’s support has been second to none….I wouldn’t have any hesitation in recommending Unilink” – Ian Malkin, Security Key Advisory
Support available to third parties Yes

Onboarding and offboarding

Onboarding and offboarding
Getting started The service is designed so that the On-boarding of customers can be completed within two or three months of the commencement date. The technical installation can be completed in a few days but it is the services, training, planning and infrastructure development that takes the time.
In addition to standard training and documentation, online hosted videos describing CMS are available over WebEx or over Unilink’s YouTube channel. With each establishment implementation Unilink also provides chargeable onsite training to meet standard customer needs.
Consumers are required to: Provide code Lists and other configuration information for On-boarding; Set up information sharing agreements with third parties for data feeds. Work with Unilink to achieve necessary security accreditation objectives
Service documentation Yes
Documentation formats
  • HTML
  • ODF
  • PDF
End-of-contract data extraction At any stage, user representatives are able to download case information to local storage and archive.
End-of-contract process The service can be terminated with one month’s notice. Hosting charges would be dependent on the length of time that data is retained on the Hosting Service. On notification, Unilink, in conjunction with the G-Cloud PaaS Hosting Provider will delete purge and destroy all information from the application and permanently remove it. At any stage, user representatives are able to download case information to local storage and archive. There are no termination costs.

Using the service

Using the service
Web browser interface Yes
Supported browsers
  • Internet Explorer 9
  • Internet Explorer 10
  • Internet Explorer 11
Application to install Yes
Compatible operating systems
  • Android
  • Windows
Designed for use on mobile devices Yes
Differences between the mobile and desktop service The service has been optimised for mobile, desktop and secure kiosks
Accessibility standards WCAG 2.0 A
Accessibility testing The service was tested at design stage and has been continually refined based on feedback from over 60 successful deployments
What users can and can't do using the API API available: Yes
API documentation Yes
API documentation formats PDF
API sandbox or test environment Yes
Customisation available Yes
Description of customisation Every implementation is customised to ensure that it dovetails with each client's site specific processes and procedures.
The Visits System is fully configurable and allows creation of custom visits rules to match establishment visit requirements. Some of these configurable features are:
Nominal and visitor warnings which prevent inappropriate visits from being booked e.g. for child protection. For instance the system will not allow a visit to be booked with an approved child visitor unaccompanied by their guardian. The age below which one is considered a child can be set by the establishment
Ability to ban or approve visitors, either individually or globally
Allows definition of prohibited and allowed visitor property
Information on booked visits can be displayed to the security and visits officer at the visits gate and visits hall, as well as in the visits reception on visitor entry. The system has a fully searchable database with an integrated report writing tool.


Independence of resources The service has been carefully architected with planned scaleability to ensure that users are not affected by the demand that other users are placing on the service.
The product is based on a platform and service architecture that is widely used with over a billion prisoner transactions thus far; in fact, one secure institute alone does more than a million transactions per month. Hence the product is well tested, reliable and has been continuously developed since 2007


Service usage metrics Yes
Metrics types Service Metrics can be provided to clients based on their specific requirements
Reporting types
  • Regular reports
  • Reports on request


Supplier type Not a reseller

Staff security

Staff security
Staff security clearance Conforms to BS7858:2012
Government security clearance Up to Security Clearance (SC)

Asset protection

Asset protection
Knowledge of data storage and processing locations Yes
Data storage and processing locations United Kingdom
User control over data storage and processing locations No
Datacentre security standards Complies with a recognised standard (for example CSA CCM version 3.0)
Penetration testing frequency At least once a year
Penetration testing approach ‘IT Health Check’ performed by a CHECK service provider
Protecting data at rest
  • Physical access control, complying with CSA CCM v3.0
  • Other
Other data at rest protection approach FIPS-assured encryption
Secure containers, racks or cages
Data sanitisation process Yes
Data sanitisation type
  • Explicit overwriting of storage before reallocation
  • 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 importing and exporting
Data export approach At any stage, user representatives are able to download case information to local storage and archive.
Data export formats Other
Other data export formats User defined
Data import formats Other
Other data import formats User defined

Data-in-transit protection

Data-in-transit protection
Data protection between buyer and supplier networks
  • Private network or public sector network
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)
Data protection within supplier network
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)

Availability and resilience

Availability and resilience
Guaranteed availability 99.99 Availability. Service Level Agreements are negotiated directly with Unilink to achieve customer objectives of service availability, recovery time and backup objectives. Financial Recompense Models covering the circumstances in which Service Levels are not met are negotiated directly with Unilink.
Approach to resilience G-Cloud PaaS Hosting Providers will provide Backup and Restore Services at the STC/Agency level. These arrangements will be negotiated and captured within Service Level Agreements. Further, G-Cloud PaaS Hosting Providers will be required to provide Disaster Recovery Services. Again, these arrangements will have to be negotiated and captured within Service Level Agreements. Unilink is an ISO27001 and 9001 accredited organisation and has full continuity management plans which have been independently audited. The company operates out of two available secure premises with redundancy built into systems, infrastructure and staffing. In the event of any disaster, Unilink will be fully operational with 24 hours. Further information is available on request
Outage reporting Service outage reports are provided via both a public dashboard and email alert

Identity and authentication

Identity and authentication
User authentication needed Yes
User authentication
  • 2-factor authentication
  • Limited access network (for example PSN)
  • Dedicated link (for example VPN)
  • Username or password
Access restrictions in management interfaces and support channels User access control within management interfaces and Administrator permissions are subjected to the following identity and authentication controls:
Username and two-factor authentication
Limited access over dedicated link, enterprise or community network
Username and strong password/passphrase enforcement
Access restriction testing frequency At least once a year
Management access authentication
  • 2-factor authentication
  • Dedicated link (for example VPN)

Audit information for users

Audit information for users
Access to user activity audit information Users have access to real-time audit information
How long user audit data is stored for User-defined
Access to supplier activity audit information Users receive audit information on a regular basis
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

Standards and certifications
ISO/IEC 27001 certification Yes
Who accredited the ISO/IEC 27001 BSI
ISO/IEC 27001 accreditation date 8/7/2014
What the ISO/IEC 27001 doesn’t cover Both the company and the Digital Marketplace Services are covered within the scope of our ISO/IEC 27001 accreditation
ISO 28000:2007 certification No
CSA STAR certification No
PCI certification No
Other security certifications No

Security governance

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 Unilink is ISO 27001 and 9001 certified and is audited by BSI Our services are designed to manage data at the IL3 level, and as a result require hosting in an appropriately accredited G-Cloud PaaS Data Centre. For example, the service can be securely hosted by SunGard or UKCloud, or other hosting partners with whom Unilink has relationships. Unilink’s test and development networks are accredited to IL3 level and can hold production data for a temporary period on a secure network. Data is destroyed after use, using approved procedures and protocols. All support and development staff are SC cleared, BD staff are cleared to CTC and the Unilink offices in Hampshire and London are physically secure and audited.

Operational security

Operational security
Configuration and change management standard Conforms to a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v3.0 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Configuration and change management approach Unilink is an ISO 27001 accredited company that uses ITIL change management processes.
Vulnerability management type Conforms to a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v3.0 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Vulnerability management approach Unilink employs independent security consultants and work closely with supply chain partners such as Microsoft and Cisco to assess potential threats and implement mitigation measures including emergency patch deployment where advised to do so.
Protective monitoring type Supplier-defined controls
Protective monitoring approach Protective monitoring processes are defined in conjunction with the client to take into account their security controls
Incident management type Supplier-defined controls
Incident management approach Security Incidents may be reported to our help desk (Service Desk) via Vendors, Customers or in-house staff. Incidents are then categorised (event severity and priority). Significant or severe events are escalated to the Service Desk Manager and are continually reported on until resolution.
Post incident reports are made available to clients within 24hrs.

Secure development

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

Public sector networks
Connection to public sector networks Yes
Connected networks
  • Public Services Network (PSN)
  • Other


Price £0.45 to £0.95 per person per day
Discount for educational organisations No
Free trial available Yes
Description of free trial The service is available for up to six months free of charge to one establishment for use on a trial basis. All such trials are individually discussed due to the operational implications.


Pricing document View uploaded document
Skills Framework for the Information Age rate card View uploaded document
Service definition document View uploaded document
Terms and conditions document View uploaded document
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