Release Notes: Here's What's New in Your Ontic Platform

Release Date: March 4th, 2020


New Ontic Mobile App New Feature 

What it is: A redesign of the Ontic mobile app with functionality specifically built for guards and field operators. The new app will initially have support for iOS phones. Support for Android phones will be available soon.


Why it matters: Critical information on the go. Guards and field operators will now be able to scroll through a list of individuals who have been designated BOLO status and scan for individuals or vehicles stored within the Ontic platform. They will also be able to provide observations directly through their phones to capture an incident or report a situation.

How it works:  

  • Download the new Ontic Mobile App from the iOS Store.

  • Use either the domain “” OR your custom domain if applicable (the domain on which you access Ontic on your desktop)

The new mobile app supports the following major functions:

  1. Add Observation / Incident

    • Tap to add and incident or observation

    • Tap “Report a Person”, “Report a Vehicle”, or “Report a Situation”

    • Complete incident details (including notes, images, video, voice, date/time, location, urgency) and submit

  2. View BOLO

    • Tap “View BOLO”

    • Swipe to view BOLOs in a card view and tap to see BOLO details

    • Scroll to view BOLOs in a list view and tap to see BOLO details

    • Tap on map icon to view BOLOs on a map

  3. Scan or Search

    • Tap to enter person or vehicle information to search the Ontic database

    • Enter text or an image to search against the Ontic database of entities

    • Tap to view POI details if there is a match

  4. View Map

    • Tap to view BOLOs

    • Manipulate the map as you would with any mobile map application

    • Filter map with the following selectors: All Time, 24 hours, 7 days, 1 Month, 6 Months

  5. View Alerts

    • Alerts icon is located in the upper left part of the mobile app

    • Tap to view a list of alerts

    • Tap again to view alert details

  6. Settings

    • Tap upper right section of app to change workspace, view about ‘Ontic mobile’ to see latest version of the app and Ontic;s privacy policy, logout

Incident / Observations v1.0 - New Feature 

What it is:  The ability in the Ontic platform to create an Incident / Observation within the Ontic platform.


Why it matters:  In the world of physical security, there are often moments when a guard, field operator, or security personnel are witness to or are made aware of an event that would be valuable to memorialize. Today, these incidents and observations are often stored in a separate system (not designed for the world of Protective Intelligence) or are never documented. We believe that having a centralized system to store and collaborate on these observations from any source device (a mobile phone, a computer, a GSOC) tied to the broader capabilities within the Ontic platform is critical. In the near future, you can take any of these Observations and open an Investigation.


How it works:  From anywhere in the Ontic platform, in the upper masthead, you can click on the blue “ADD” button. Once selected, you can choose “Observation” and enter in the requested information.

You can view your observation (and the observations of others) in the Intelligence Feeds. Simply click on “Intelligence Feeds” from the 9-box navigation and create a ‘+ New Feed’ under Workflow Signals called “Observations”. Once that feed is named and created it will be displayed along with your other feeds. Clicking on an observation in the feed will enable you to see the ‘Observation Details’.

Interactive Timeline View - New Feature 

What it is: The ability to see a horizontal view of each entity's timeline of activity graphically represented in an interactive chart format.

Why it matters: You can tell a story about each entity by simply viewing their timeline graph. The ‘Linear’ timeline view, while very effective as an audit trail of activity surrounding the entity, does not easily convey the activity level surrounding that individual visually over time. The new timeline graph can express at a glance the activity level from both external signals and well as internal team actions in a dynamic and interactive way. 

How it works: From the 9-box navigation, click on “Entities”. From here, select an entity to view its details. In the upper horizontal navigation, click on the “Timeline” tab. The default tab on this page should be the “Horizontal” view. Here you can see the ‘Entity Activity’ activity associated with this entity plotted along that row. Below, you will see the ‘User Activity’ associated with this entity plotted along the row below the midline. 

Each of the icons plotted on the chart indicate an activity  associated with this entity and can be hovered over to reveal a summary and date / time and clickable to view those details.

The chart can be manipulated several ways:

  • Zoom: in the upper right of the chart you can click on 1 month, 3 month, 6 month, 1 year, and All view

  • Show Empty States: clicking this on will display the chart with actual events plotted over actual times. This means that if there is no activity for some period of time, those sections will not have any signal activity. If you uncheck the box, the signals will be displayed in evenly spaced increments, but the times below will no longer be linear. 

  • Filters: next to the empty state checkbox you will find filters to expose display options where you can toggle between ‘Source Creation Time’ (when the actual event took place) and ‘Ontic Capture Time’ (when the information was capture within Ontic).  You can also filter the result by selecting ‘Activity Type’. 

At the bottom of the chart you will find two additional ways to manipulate the graph:

  • Click on labels located at the very bottom of the chart. Each label will filter the chart accordingly and can be turned on or off independently with each click.

  • Additionally, you will find small handles to manipulate the time duration of the chart. Grabbing and sliding the handle to the right will shrink the time duration of the graph; pulling it to the left will expand the duration of the graph. Once the appropriate time period is selected that entire block can also be moved by clicking on it and moving the mouse to the left or the right. See image of the handle below. The handles are located on both the left and right side of the chart.

On this page to view the original vertical scrolling details for a timeline, you can the ‘View As’ dropdown in the upper left of the chart from ‘Horizontal’ to ‘Vertical’.

BOLO Report Builder & Stylized Report Templates - Enhancement

What it is: The ability to manage custom BOLO report creation and display formatting with a set of new stylized report templates.

Why it matters:  You have requested the ability to personalize a report based on the needs of your business and the various audiences these reports serve. 

You should have the ability to select the fields you wish to include in a report, the style of the report, and save custom templates. Additionally, the look and feel of the reports should reflect the company’s branding and a professional looking report for distribution.  

How it works: From the 9-box navigation under Administration, click on ‘BOLO Templates’. From here, you can ‘Add BOLO Template’ and begin the process of developing and saving your custom template for future distribution. Begin by naming and providing a description for your template, and then determine the layout (horizontal or vertical)  and the content fields you would like to include in the BOLO report. You can choose to include your company’s logo, the Ontic watermark, and adjust the fields that would be included in the report header. The layout can also be changed from ‘portrait’ to ‘landscape’ mode. 

For the main content portion of the report, different fields can be turned on/off or re-sorted with simple drag up or drag down options. This can be initiated by clicking on the “Sort” button. The temple can be saved and managed along with other template you wish to create for specific audiences.  

Once you are ready to generate and download a BOLO report for a specific entity, you simply follow the same “Generate BOLO” action on an entity’s page as you do today. Note: you will be able to a) select a BOLO report format from one of the dropdown report templates b) see a preview of what that BOLO report will look like and c) download the final BOLO report for distribution.

Guest List Verification 2.0 - Enhancement


What it is:  An improved Guest List Verification experience within the Ontic platform.


Why it matters:  Easier to consume and manage. The new guest list scan will display cleaner match results, the number of records scanned, the number of guests with matches, and the number of guests with no matches found. The new design makes it easier to see the file that was scanned as well as the guest guest with matching entities in the Ontic platform.


How it works:  From the 9-box navigation, once “Guest List Verification” is selected, a new “Analyze Guest List” scan can be conducted against a new file uploaded. To view the new interface, click on any of the rows to view the results of your guest list scans. Here you will see a summary of the file scanned matched results (if any).

From here you can toggle on / off the fields that have matched to narrow results. You can also use the ‘quick search’ feature to view results matched to specific individuals.

On this screen you can click on the “Match Settings” button to manipulate the fields you would like to have matched from your guest list. You can also require ‘exact matches’ and ‘restrict search to entities only’ (and exclude profiles). 

By clicking the three dots next to any matched results, you can either add the matched entity to a collection or apply a custom tag (for example, by using a tag entitled “Shareholder Event 2020” to indicate entities you wish to be aware of as possible attendees), or “Add Note.’ 

Custom Fields for User - New Feature


What it is:  An optional ability for an Administrator to add additional custom fields for each user in the Ontic platform.


Why it matters: Provides more contextual information about each Ontic user so that notifications, alerts, feature permissions, approvals, locations, user groups, and workspaces can be managed effectively across the Ontic platform. This is a building-block component that will be more generally applicable in future releases.  

How it works:  Step 1 - To create a new custom field for each user: From the 9-box navigation under ‘Administration’, click on “Custom Fields”. Click on the User Tab (next to the Entity Tab) on this page. Here you can add any custom field by clicking on “Add Custom Field”. These are extremely flexible and allow you to create many variations of field properties you would like to associate with each user. You can also edit existing custom fields that have been created by an Administrator and hide or unhide these fields from properties that would be displayed with each Ontic user.

Step 2 - To associate each user of the Ontic platform with the new custom fields that have been created: From the 9-box navigation under ‘Administration’, click on “Users”. From this page you can add a User or edit and existing one by clicking on the pencil icon. Here under “Other Details” you can for example identify the location this user is working, who they report to, as well as other custom fields you would like to associate with each user. These are entirely dependent on the custom field properties you created in Step 1.

Dynamic User Groups New Feature


What it is:  The ability to create dynamic user groups with inclusion and exclusion properties.


Why it matters: Provides flexibility on how notifications, alerts, feature permissions, approvals, locations, users, and workspaces can be managed effectively across the Ontic platform to specific distribution lists. Eliminates the need for an administrator to manually configure functionality for individual users provided they are included in a given group. For example, if an administrator wishes to give a certain set of permissions to all guards using Ontic, they need only configure this once and as soon as a new user is given access to Ontic in the capacity of a guard then he/she will automatically receive these permissions. 


How it works:  From the 9-box navigation under ‘Administration’, click on “User Groups”. From here you can create a new user group by clicking on “Add User Group”. Once you have added Group Info, a Group Icon, you can assign Workspace Visibility by clicking on the appropriate checkboxes. From here there are two ways to ‘include’ people or custom field definitions to your user group. If you select “Add field and values”, those assignments will apply to this specific user group. Alternatively, you can assign individuals as well to this user group much like you would with a distribution list. You can follow the same steps to ‘exclude’ people or field definitions from this user group. From the main User Group page you can also “Edit” and “De-Activate” user groups by clicking on the three dot menu at the right of the screen.

Rules - New Feature (in Beta)


What it is:  The ability to automate a number of actions in the Ontic platform based on a set of configurable rules conditions.


Why it matters:  Avoid missing out on key alerts or update action related to the information you care about. There are often a series of conditions that would trigger an action or a set of actions that you would take regarding an entity or a person of concern. Now with Rules, you can automate those steps programmatically to send out an alert, change the threat level of a POI, or countless other actions automatically. You get to decide and build these custom rules directly and manage the outcomes.

How it works:  From the 9-box navigation under Administration, click on “Rules”. Here you will see a list a Rules you have already created or you can click on the “Create Rule” button to configure one from scratch. Here, after having entered the Rule name and description, you can begin the Rule Builder process. First, you can configure a statement if ‘an Entity meets the following condition’. Simply use the drop downs to create your criteria and add conditions or condition blocks as required. Next, build out the the statement ‘And any of the following event happens’ by clicking “Add Event”. Follow the sequence of prompts to build out these event conditions. Once this has been completed, you can follow the prompts for ‘Then perform the following actions.’ This will determine what action or outcome you would like to achieve with these rule conditions. You can save these rules as a ‘draft’ or ‘publish’ them to activate.

Research History - New Feature (in Beta)


What it is:  The ability to view searches that you have conducted across any research tool within Ontic. If you are an administrator we also provide the ability to view all searches conducted by any user of the Ontic platform. If you are an analyst, you see your own searches.


Why it matters: Visibility and awareness. As an administrator, you may be interested in the searches that are being conducted across your team. What are guards searching for? Who are the individuals that field operators and agents are interested in? Why are so many searched being conducted about a specific individual on TLO or using Identity Intelligence? You can now see all of those searches to understand the research history and interest of your team. A manager or a GSOC agent may want to see all the searches that have been conducted over the last x number of days by everyone who is a user of the Ontic platform within a given workspace. No matter, the search source, their role. or their search device (laptop, desktop, mobile phone, tablet). If you are not an administrator, it can still be valuable to see all of the historical searches you have conducted across risk intelligence, identity intelligence, investigative tools, mobile devices, etc. 


How it works:  From the 9-box navigation click on”Research History” under Intelligence Research. Here you will view: 

  • Type Search 

  • Searched On - where the search was conducted from

  • Query - examples include keyword or vehicle

  • The actual search 

  • Searched By - who conducted the search

  • Search Time - when the search was conducted

  • View Details - this link will show the same results that the user would have seen

In the upper right you can also filter by ‘Search Type’ by selecting from the drop down.

At the very top of the page you can toggle between “Search History” and “Recently Accessed Entities” which will display a list of the entities searched for by you / your teams sorted by recency.

Investigations - New Feature 

Please contact your Ontic team for more information about this feature

What it is:  The ability to start (open) an investigation within the Ontic platform and manage the case lifecycle until the investigation has been completed and closed.


Why it matters:  A single place to conduct investigations, gather evidence, link observations / incidents, individuals (entities), and various types of connections. These can all be stored digitally within the Ontic platform and integrated across the entire Ontic database. You can manage these ‘cases’ and collaborate with investigative teams as the case matures through its phases and lifecycle. 


How it works:  From the 9-box navigation under Intelligence Feeds, you can start an investigation from an “Observations” feed. Simply click on the “analyze” button to open the ‘Observation details’ right pane. Here you can view the details on the observation and click on the blue link to view or ‘Start Investigation’.  

On the investigation page you will see the case number on the left with the prefix “INV”. The ‘Basic Details’ section will house the main detail about the case. Specific details like Status and Priority are in-line editable. The next section called ‘Investigation Source’ will contain the source evidence that make up the core of the investigation. This will typically begin with the Observation associated with this investigation along with all of its attribution details. Here, anyone with access to this investigation can chat directly with the individual who submitted the observation. Simply click on the “chat” icon (pictured below) to initiate.

Below this section you can add and edit the individuals you would like to assign to this investigation including the assignment of a lead investigator. The next section will help you visualize all associations linked to this investigation. This includes ‘observations’ and ‘entity / signal profiles’ as well. These associations can be viewed graphically or in a list view format.

Below this section you will find a section to add “Notes” to this investigation and below that a section to view the investigation “Timeline” of major actions you and other team members have executed.

Factal (Real-Time Breaking News) Integration - New Integration 

Please contact your Ontic team for more information about this feature

What it is:  The ability to view and interact with breaking news integrated directly into the Ontic platform from Factal.


Why it matters:  One screen. If you have a license to use Factal for real-time breaking news you would now be able to see those news items directly within the Ontic platform as an integrated part of our Intelligence Feeds. 


How it works:  From the 9-box navigation, click on 'Intelligence Feeds’. From here you can click on the ‘+ New Feed’ box in the upper right part of the screen. You can add a new feed by clicking on ‘Factal News’ under the live signals section and once the feed is named it will be viewable as a new column feed. 

The feed column can be filtered by keywords, topics, location, sectors, geo fencing, active incidents, cities, countries, and verticals to narrow breaking news to content that is most relevant to you. Clicking on the teardrop icon in the feed will display the visual map alongside the feed that can be interacted with.

Release Notes: Additional Enhancements

Release Date: March 4th, 2020

Password Security Validation - Enhancement


What it is:  Security validation to ensure that passwords are replaced regularly after 90 days, that passwords do not match previous passwords, that a maximum number of user login attempts are engineered, and that a minimum allowable password length is established.