Chasing and shooting at criminals is what a lot of law enforcement agencies do to catch the bad guys. Yes, it still works and will always be the method that law authorities use, but as criminals become more sophisticated, so must the methods used to stop them. Those methods don’t have to be anything elaborate or costly, just effective. An agency in the United Kingdom has found such a way.
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The National Policing Improvement Agency in the UK has begun training its detectives on social media and the use of sites like Facebook and Twitter to gather and act on information pertaining to criminal elements. The agency uses the information it retrieves to crack cold cases and for further information in ongoing investigations.
The NPIA recently decided to completely overhaul its detective training program to include the vital element of the digital evidence tracking gained from the social networking sites. Detectives will be trained on how to use the site, interact with various communities on the site and how/where to go to get the information needed to trace and capture criminals.
About 3,500 detectives pass through the agency’s training courses yearly. Therefore, with the introduction of a new resource to do their jobs more effectively, the agency is significantly increasing its impact on the criminal community. It’s also an easier and often faster way to do their jobs.
Law agencies using social sites in crime-solving is certainly nothing new, but for the NPIA, the chance to drive down crime in every area will certainly make the citizens feel more comfortable.
Deputy Chief Constable, Nick Gargan, who is the head of the NPIA feels that this new program will better equip law enforcement personnel as it offers comprehensive training in a sensitive area and addresses modernized policing more effectively. There is much more now at the detective’s disposal.