Surrey Police launches Facewatch smartphone application

Following the success of its ‘Beat’ mobile phone app, Surrey Police has now launched Facewatch, a smartphone application that allows members of the public to help identify suspects at the touch of a button.

Aug 2, 2012
By Paul Jacques

Following the success of its ‘Beat’ mobile phone app, Surrey Police has now launched Facewatch, a smartphone application that allows members of the public to help identify suspects at the touch of a button.

Facewatch is available free of charge on iPhone, Blackberry and Android smartphones through their application stores and works when a user inputs their postcode into the front screen. The user will then see a number of CCTV images connected to crimes in their area with a function of providing information anonymously to their local police force.

The force hopes Facewatch will help identify people caught on camera that may be responsible for a crime or allow the public to help with an active investigation.

Detective Inspector Mark Parry, said: “Surrey Police is already known as an innovative force and the launch of Facewatch in the county is a very exciting step in the use of smartphone technology.

“The force recognises the importance of new technology and the constantly expanding world of social media to help us meet both the demands of modern-day policing and the demand of the public.

“Residents, who are ever busy and more mobile, are able to access the service in the comfort of their own home, on the daily commute or at their leisure and at a time of stretched police budgets, this application offers a simple and cost effective way of helping us engage with them.

“The application works so well because of its simplicity, allowing users to anonymously identify suspects involved in crimes such as shoplifting and anti-social behaviour.”

Facewatch chairman Simon Gordon, said: “Surrey Police is the second UK force to launch Facewatch just a few weeks since the successful launch by the Metropolitan Police Service in London, where results were seen immediately, so we very much hope that this trend will continue in Surrey and all UK police forces quickly follow in using this free application”

Surrey Police’s Beat app allows users to view videos, pictures and Tweets to keep track of what officers are up to in their area, look at where crimes have taken place and even vote on policing priorities.

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