Crime reporting app launched in Durban

October 25, 2019
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THE FIGHT against crime has gone digital.

Residents in Isipingo, south of Durban were introduced to an app that will help them report crimes to the police.

The My SAPS app is available on Android and iOS and is free to download. SAPS Lieutenant-General Nobe-suthu Masiye, acting divisional commissioner for technological services, said the app was developed over about two years. “It was an initiative from our detective offices at the Crime Stop main office so that our communities can report crimes anonymously,” she said.

Masiye said the app would help catch criminals and those planning to break the law.

The app, being piloted in KwaZulu- Natal, would be rolled out to other provinces in due course. Users would be able to take videos or pictures of crimes and send these to Crime Stop. The tip would be sent to the relevant province and police station to follow up.

Masiye said the transfer of information would happen seamlessly. She said the app was part of the government’s plans to use the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) to resolve some of the country’s problems.

My SAPS could also be used to report corrupt police officers. Masiye said information received on such officers would be forwarded to the Independent Police Investigative Directorate for further investigation. Community policing forums were being asked to encourage residents to download and use the app.

Isipingo community police forum chairperson Aiden David said it was about time an app was launched which gave residents the chance to interact with the government at national level. “This is one way to root out corruption. This is one way to root out police officers taking state money and not doing the job, and it’s a great app.” David said Isipingo was chosen for the launch because it had recently had a high crime rate,” he said.

David said the SAPS wanted the app to be downloaded in abundance in the townships. The app would be introduced to other areas over the next few days, with the main launch expected to be in uMlazi tomorrow, David said.

Folweni resident Fikile Mhlongo said the app would make it easier for her to report crime. Her granddaughter could report crime too as she also had a smartphone.

*Original article appeared in IOL

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