Police are Tracking Tube Sex Attackers Using Facial Recognition Software

By Tom Pritchard on at

Figures show that the number of sex attacks on the London Underground and Docklands Light Railway rose by 39 per cent last year, with 429 assaults in 2013/14 compared to 327 in 2012/13. To tackle the problem police have not only increased the number of undercover officers, they are also using sophisticated facial recognition software to help identify the culprits.

Apparently only a quarter of Tube sex attackers are caught, but with the new Victoria-based CCTV system, which has over 55,000 cameras at its disposal, police are hoping to tackle the problem more effectively.

But that's not all. The police are well aware of the power of social media, and have previously used Facebook and Twitter as a tool to help solve crimes. One instance saw police receive 1,800 pieces of information from one image, and Paul Crowther, Chief Constable of British Transport Police, said that cases are being solved entirely thanks to appeals on social media.

He said: “People think they can carry out stealth crimes, whether that is sex offences or pickpocketing, and not be detected, but the power of social media and new technologies, such as facial recognition, are very powerful new crime fighting tools.”

Of course some people will have concerns over privacy, but unless you're in the business of committing crimes, you probably don't have anything to worry about. [London Evening Standard]