Today’s cities are faced with challenges of insecurity especially concerning crime and terrorism. While some parts of the world are quite peaceful with a few or no cases of crime reported, the story is different in some places. Countering terrorism requires a collective effort to ensuring a curtail of attacks coupled with the integration of innovative technologies and skilled human resources ready to combat this menace.
Crime mapping entails application of geospatial technology in the quest to strategically adopting smart innovative techniques in addressing crime.
Crime mapping can be used to visualize and analyse the movements or target patterns of criminals and crime spots. Mapping software is pertinent in the fight against crime as it exposes crime offenders via spatially organized data displayed on maps. Crime mapping allows researchers and other stakeholders to explore crime patterns, offender mobility and offenses committed over time and space. Through local policing, crime mapping provides visualize crime clusters portraying types of crime, areas prone to crime, thus validating the street knowledge of patrol officers.
Advances and applications of artificial intelligence have helped build a neutral network that is specific to various crimes using new techniques. The technology of today allows providing precise real-time information to police officers, and at best possible time.
Effective security measures start with the mindset that involves so many crime types, and terrorism. With some exceptions though, there tend to be a cluster in time and space amongst specific population groups. Increase in computing power has made it possible to compute vast quantities of data related to crime and terrorism to help identify underlying correlations and causes. The processing of these data is pertinent to enabling thorough security in cities. When cities, authorities and civic society groups have access to real-time data whether generated by facial recognition, crime mapping, gunshot detection systems or surveillance, they can get better at detecting crime before it occurs.
There are ethical questions that could be generated by the application of newly improved technologies and public security. For instance, technology-enabled security solutions such as; facial recognition are seeking to detect suspicious behaviour by gathering all manner of information on citizens to develop profiles on high-risk individuals. Often, criticisms arise from reproducing racial biases. Artificial intelligence in crime mapping and other forms of security should be informed by principles and procedures to ensure fairness and transparency of these technologies.
In the quest to combating crime and ensuring security, there is no need to use averages of three- or four-years crime to identify hotspots crime areas in cities. Instead, tools that allow hotspots target in real-time are available today and at an easy reach. This improves proactive measures in fighting crime instead of waiting for archaic crime records to make predictions.
By Michael Ugom
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