Technology Allows Cell Phone Users To Provide Anonymous Crime Fighting Tips
For the first time, mobile phone users across the United States and Canada now have the ability to provide anonymous crime fighting tips through the power of SMS text messaging. mBlox and Anderson Software LLC have joined together to provide this service which allows citizens to send anonymous tips by sending a text message from a mobile phone.
“The popularity of text messaging has created a significant opportunity for the public to help law enforcement agencies fight crime,” said Steve Livingston, chief marketing officer of mBlox. “The ability for any citizen who owns a mobile phone to assist in crime solving is of great importance to communities globally, and we are excited to play such a pivotal role in the transmission of these crime fighting tips.”
mBlox enables businesses to deliver and bill for mobile services and content around the world while simplifying the commercial and technical complexities involved. Through its partnership with Anderson Software, mBlox will provide access to the networks necessary to ensure that possible crime solving tips reliably reach law enforcement while protecting the anonymity of the sender.
"I have been a law enforcement officer for over 30 years, and this is by far the most innovative, progressive tool I have ever seen in my career,” said Myrle Carner, director of law enforcement services for the Seattle Police Department. “There is no doubt that this program will dramatically increase our crime solving capabilities."
Crime Stoppers, the recognized international community action group that supports law enforcement agencies in gathering intelligence, has embraced this technology. The organization anticipates that this new system will attract more citizens to come forward with tips that may not have been previously submitted.
“Utilizing SMS text message technology is extremely important to Crime Stoppers because taking tips 24/7 that are truly anonymous is the life blood of the program,” said Elaine Cloyd, president of Crime Stoppers USA. “We have worked with Anderson Software for many years and many Crime Stopper programs are using the TipSoft tip reporting system. We were already excited about the development of their WebTip application, which has doubled the tips coming in to many programs, and look forward with anticipation to the TipSoft SMS product.”
Using TipSoft SMS, tips may be anonymously received and securely replied. Anderson Software has built this service specifically to allow text messaging informants to remain anonymous by encrypting the text messages and routing them through several secure servers, protecting the personal details of the informant.
TipSoft SMS also allows police to respond by text message to the originating cell phone without ever knowing the identity of the individual who left the tip. The user’s information is always given an alias and a unique ID before being sent. This secure application allows the tipster and the investigator to have two-way dialog while always keeping the user’s identity completely anonymous.
“Due to the massive popularity of text messaging, we felt it was necessary to develop a secure and anonymous means of easy communication between mobile phone users and law enforcement,” said Kevin Anderson, CEO of Anderson Software. “With TipSoft SMS, everyday citizens will have the opportunity to offer an anonymous tip when they are mobile to a variety of law enforcement agencies via a simple text message.” Anderson encourages tipsters to report information about any non-urgent illegal activity, such as unsolved cases, vandalism, theft and the sale and distribution of drugs.