Neighborhoods across America are taking advantage and using our technology to prevent crime. Some communities are downsizing their police force due to the economy and neighborhoods are responding by forming more neighborhood watch groups. In fact, the National Sheriff's Association office shows an increase of neighborhood watch groups across the US. In 2005 there were 5,000 registered neighborhood watch groups compared to 20,000 groups in 2009!
These watch groups are high tech now. Twittering, emailing and text messaging are a fast communication tool that really keeps all the members in the watch group in touch with what is going on in their neighborhoods. Members of these groups tweet a constant stream of crime alerts to a privacy-protected Twitter address. Others blog about certain activities that are suspicious and warn their neighbors. Sometimes they text message to all neighbors and request for everyone to call the police about a suspicious crime activity. According to groups, the more calls the police get, the quicker they respond.
Most city police officials offer training to these neighborhood watch groups. They explain how to identify suspicious behavior and how to respond to it. They also warn block watch members who aren't trained by police that they should be cautious of overstepping legal boundaries, such as peeking through people's windows, etc.
WOW, who would of thought that all these Twitters and text messages were going to actually keep us safer in the future?