NYPD Scanning Social Media To Track Criminals Online

August 10, 2011
NYPD - Cushmans by Flickr user tom_hoboken

NYPD - Cushmans by Flickr user tom_hoboken

As bad-guy technology is evolving, police departments across the nation are scrambling to keep up. The NYPD's latest weapon in the fight against car theft: a crack social media team formed to help track and catch criminals.

According to the New York Daily News the new team will "mine social media" in an effort to find criminal behavior ranging from out-of-control house parties to gang fights. Initial plans are to monitor activity on Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace, though we're sure other social media outlets will be added if deemed valuable.

This wouldn't be the first time police have ventured onto social media. We've reported on police using Twitter to help recover stolen vehicles, and cases of police tweeting about stolen vehicles in attempts to have consumers help locate said vehicle. We're certain the cops' SM squad will boost activity on this front.

And while we're happy to see law enforcement agencies embracing social media, instead of dismissing it as a time waster, we're kind of curious about who they're following. And where they're checking in. Dunkin' Donuts, anyone?

[New York Daily News via Mashable]

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