Help victims of digital crime more quickly

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East Netherlands – Victims of online crime in Gelderland and Overijssel receive agents at home more quickly to record a report or secure traces. This approach of the East Netherlands unit is unique. This new method, for example, sends the police to a victim who has just been (almost) defrauded by a so-called bank employee.

It remains possible to report these and other digital crime phenomena in other ways, for example online. And since mid-January it has been possible to send officers directly to the victim via the control room. At home, victims can record a report together with the officers, but they can also look out for possible suspects.

Previously, victims were often informed of the option of filing a report online or coming to the office for an appointment. From now on, people in Gelderland and Overijssel will have more options: police on the spot or reporting the crime in another way. This increases the police’s chance of catching perpetrators and important information can be recorded for further investigation.

Since the start, dozens of reports have been received and arrested in the East of the Netherlands. After a report, a suspected scammer was arrested. He had 6,500 euros with him. The man had no explanation for that amount of money. A declarant also received 1,500 euros back. An attempt was made to make purchases with the victim’s money via a sales site. The officer who was on the scene managed to stop the sale. Victims indicate that they really appreciate the approach.

Different phenomena

The scale of online crime is great, people are scammed online every day. Common forms are bank helpdesk fraud (where the bank calls that the money in a certain account is at risk and needs to be secured) and sextortion (where there is a threat to make sexually explicit images public). The new working method applies to these and some other forms.

Can of soda and sandwich

‘We do this first and foremost for the victim. If there is a chance to find a suspect, we will certainly pursue it. Our first goal is to help the complainant. This has expanded our services with an option that is needed.’ That’s what Sander Hoed says: one of the initiators. ‘Until recently I worked on a basic team and I was surprised that we do respond to a report of theft of a can of soft drink and a sandwich, but that people who have been defrauded of thousands of euros have to make an appointment or are referred to the online reporting option. .’ Together with Remko Leeneman he devised the Digital Control Room. A working title, because this process takes place via the regular control room. Reports from the control room are picked up by the emergency response officers.

It is expected that this new working method will be rolled out in more units in 2024. Possibly even nationally, because it is necessary, as is evident from the appreciation we receive from the victims.


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