The Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) has announced the implementation of an anonymous crime-tip reporting system, which uses a common cell phone texting or Internet-based platform.
TIPSOFT is an application which allows a tipster to provide information to the LBPD and remain completely anonymous through one of two methods. The first option is through Short Message Service (SMS), more commonly known as a text message, which can be used by virtually any cell phone user. The second option is to submit a “web tip” using any computer in the world equipped with Internet service.
Either way, a third-party provider captures the tip and assigns the tipster a code which can be used by the tipster so that, if desired, the tipster can re-enter the system to add information or determine if detectives have any follow-up questions they might be able to answer. The tipster and the LBPD can communicate only through an “anonymizer” and the tipster need not ever be known to police.
“In light of the serious budget constraints that we continue to face daily, we must take full advantage of what technology has to offer to help us improve our effectiveness to solve crime,” said Police Chief Jim McDonnell. “Individuals who possess valuable information can report it and feel confident that their identity will be protected.”
Individuals wanting to “text a tip” can do so by following a few easy steps. First, the tipster needs to text “274637” which can be easily remembered by spelling the word “CRIMES” on the keypad. Next, the person must begin their message with the letters LBPD and then follow it with their tip. Tipsters preferring to submit a “web tip” should visit tipsubmit.com, click on “Submit A Tip” and then follow the prompts.