These days, people are using the social networks for all their needs. The number of users of these social networks is growing very fast. Facebook is an example of this kind of social networks. According to an analysis, the registered users of the Facebook are about 42 million in the world. According to another survey the users of the Facebook will increase by about 30% in the next few months. People are exchanging the information on these social networks freely. So, it is a nice idea to catch the criminals using these social networks. Many people feel hesitant at times to inform about the criminals directly to the police or intelligence agencies, even if they have any information about the criminals. Even some international criminals can also be caught through these social networks. They can be identified easily throughout the world, wherever they are, if they log onto these social networks.

Criminal Perspectives of Social Networking

Police are now trying to jump towards the social networks to gather the intelligence from the local communities; this will help a lot to catch the criminal. Criminals and their plans can be found out though these social networks too. Criminals use these social networks for communication and so it is also essential to monitor these social networks to stop the criminal activities in the world.

Closed circuit television (CCTV) videos and photographs of criminals while in action are being uploaded by the Manurewa and Queenstown police. In fact, an Intelligence Constable named Sean Drader has set up a police page for the Queenstown police in December 2008. This page has more than 1600 fans and they have correctly identified one or two suspected offenders each month.

Facebook Patrol

Mr. Darder told police magazine “Ten One” that they are getting loads of CCTV video footage they couldn’t do anything with. He said using stills they often can’t recognize people because of the quality of the picture, but they can get more information through the moving images or videos. Mr. Drader also said that “two or three” other police forces are using the Facebook worldwide for recruitment and community policing messages. He said that one video of a criminal was online for just 34 minutes before the criminal was identified and it led to his arrest. These are examples of how the social networks can be used by intelligence agencies for their own needs.

Mr. Drader is able to access the statistics including information about who is looking at the page. And for what purpose he or she is viewing the page because Mr Dardar is the owner of that page. He also said that police need to recognize Facebook as an investigation tool. He said everyone is using the internet now a day. People are communicating to each other via social networks like Twitter. David Brooke said that Manurewa police setup their site last year in February. This page has more than 800 fans, with four officers checking the page every weekday. While the page was about solving crime, he said he would like to enhance it further and also said that people are really appreciating this effort. They are receiving very positive comments from the people who are delivering these comments via phone calls.