BALTIMORE — (BUSINESS WIRE) — April 11, 2012 — SpotCrime, the most comprehensive online source for crime data, announced today that it will make its crime mapping service available to every police department in the U.S. free of charge.
The decision by SpotCrime to map crime data for any police department that requests it “will help to meet the public’s increasing demand for accurate, up-to-date crime data, allowing departments to devote more of their budgets to putting police on the street,” according to SpotCrime Founder and President Colin Drane.
Drane decided to offer crime mapping services to police departments nationwide after learning that some of his competitors were charging police agencies for exclusive mapping services, then reselling that crime data for commercial purposes.
“Knowing how much people need that crime data, we wanted to make our crime mapping services available without locking police departments into restrictive contracts with a single vendor,” explains Drane, whose company has become the nation’s most visited crime mapping website by a 2-to-1 margin.
“SpotCrime has always been a strong proponent of open access to data,” Drane continues “The more people aware of what’s occurring in their communities, the higher the chance that community will be proactive in the fight against crime.”
In offering to map crime data for any police department in the country, SpotCrime hopes to improve community safety by promoting mutual trust between law enforcement and the public, according to Drane. “Ultimately, we believe this will help to lower crime rates and increase the public’s peace of mind,” he asserts.
Through its model, SpotCrime pulls crime incident data from multiple sources, including local county and city police departments and validated news sources, to produce a comprehensive record of local crime information.
SpotCrime currently sends subscribers over four million email alerts monthly. With its media partners and multiple websites, SpotCrime estimates that more than five million people interact with the crime data the company generates each month.
The company has attracted numerous subscribers through its partnerships with major U.S. media companies, including Gannett, Sinclair, Belo Television, and Hearst. In addition, SpotCrime has seen its use skyrocket on DIRECTV, where customers have made SpotCrime’s TV App the fastest growing application offered by the popular video service, surpassing even Facebook.
SpotCrime also has launched an iPhone application which allows users to obtain detailed descriptions of the crimes listed and share crime incidents with others via email.
“SpotCrime is a commercial enterprise. We do not take any public funding and have no interested in locking up the data,” explains Drane. “SpotCrime’s intent is to get all relevant crime information to the public, taking full advantage of the Internet to allow this data to be shared, ultimately driving both greater awareness and new measures that will lead to a reduction in crime.”
For more information about SpotCrime, visit the company’s website at www.spotcrime.com.
Ray Weiss, 443-451-7144