Computer Crime Research Center


Police Win Award for Internet Gun Tracking System

Date: October 26, 2004
By: Alex Thompson

A British police force has won international recognition after developing a hi-tech system to track the illegal sale of firearms on the internet, it emerged today.

The process, devised by West Midlands Police, allowed officers to establish how weapons were being brought into the country and where they were destined.

The force’s Hi-Tech Crime Unit worked closely with the internet auction site eBay UK to develop the system, which is being adopted by police nationwide.

A spokesman said officers had analysed confiscated computers to develop a process which could be applied to the illegal sale of other property.

Assistant Chief Constable Stuart Hyde said: “This is a major achievement and demonstrates how local forces, working with industry, can use hi-tech investigation skills to impact on local crime.

“The techniques that have brought child abusers to justice are just as effective when tackling mainstream criminality such as robbery and burglary, where people try to hide behind the supposed anonymity of the internet to sell stolen goods.”

West Midlands Police officers went to Canada to receive the 2004 International Law Enforcement Cybercrime award presented by the Society for the Policing of Cyberspace.
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