Digital Vigilantism: Every superhero needs a sidekick

Vigilantism sounds like something from a superhero movie: the hero wants to save the world, but cannot rely on the police to catch the bad guys. Instead, (s)he goes out to seek justice by him or herself.  In todays digital society, vigilante behavior is not only a matter of superheroes or a few very brave citizens. Instead, digital vigilantism is …

Missing Person! Crowdsourcing a Solution

Twenty-four hours had passed since GC went missing. He was suffering from an illness which required daily medication. A worried relative headed to the police to report the incident… right after posting it on her Facebook. She had no doubt of the benefits that asking for other citizens’ collaboration via social media could. But should Law Enforcement Agencies and other …

An interview with Traffic Droid

“Foul!” yells Lewis, aka Traffic Droid, from his bicycle before brandishing a red card in the face of a dumbfounded delivery driver. The scene is not a football pitch, rather the middle of a London street, where Lewis, alias the “Traffic Droid”, is busy enforcing the law. The 51-year-old is one of dozens of British cyclists who have found a …

digital community

Policing with the Digital Community

The recent Next Generation Community Policing conference – organised by a group of 9 community policing-focused Horizon2020 projects – was an opportunity to showcase research findings emerging from MEDI@4SEC. I t was also another opportunity to exchange views with and draw on the expertise of an impressive audience of experts and practitioners, including representatives from EUROPOL and INTERPOL and leading …

World’s First DIY Policing Workshop Receives Great Interest

The Do-It-Yourself Policing workshop organized by the MEDI@4SEC project in Berlin at January 10 was a huge success. For the first time, stakeholders from all over Europe engaged in an interactive dialogue on the future of DIY Policing, the opportunities and challenges for police organisations, and it’s ethical and legal implications. While experience still varies across Europe, all were convinced …

Pattern Language of Social Media

A Pattern Language of Social Media Practice in Public Security

Based on interviews with security planners and law enforcement agencies, and building on our state of the art review,  an inventory of best practices, lessons-learned and roles and responsibilities has been created by the MEDI@4SEC project. This has enabled us to better understand the different ways social media is being used by police and other public security planners, within and outside Europe, …

DIY Policing: The Modern Sherlock Holmes

The Internet, smartphones and social media have become tools for citizens to perform activities that have traditionally fallen within the remit of the Police and other organisations dealing with public security. As modern Sherlock Holmes citizens may assist the police and go beyond both for good and not so good. Citizens investigate crimes, identify suspects, form vigilante groups, hunt paedophiles …