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Explaining ANPR and law enforcement relations

Explaining ANPR and law enforcement relations

Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) is a technology system that is widely used by law enforcement all around the world. What the ANPR system does is use cameras in order to take pictures of the number plates of all vehicles, it then uses software to scan the numbers and letters and convert them into data that will be kept in a database. The use of the data varies for a lot of different intents. Examples are identifying missing or stolen vehicles and pursuing criminals.


How does the ANPR system operate?

The ANPR system’s cameras are usually put on top of police cars, so once a car passes by the police vehicle the camera takes numerous pictures. Those pictures will then be sent to a central computer to be processed and there the data of the number plate will be extracted. That data will then be available to check against known criminal databases or databases for vehicles that have been stolen.

Monitoring the flow of traffic and implementing parking rules is another way the ANPR system can be utilized. If the ANPR camera detects a car parked in a parking spot reserved for the disabled and they don’t have a pass, a ticket can be issued to that car automatically.


Ways ANPR data is used by law enforcement

Law enforcement uses ANPR data quite a lot, as it makes their jobs easier and reduces human errors. They can use the data by making comparisons against other databases of known and/or wanted criminals as well as databases for stolen vehicles. This helps the police identify suspects and find the stolen vehicles a lot easier and efficiently so they can act quicker. The data ANPR provides is also used to create intelligence reports in order for law enforcement to target locations and increase surveillance.

The ANPR system has been getting a lot more sophisticated and in turn, will continue to be used more. This has started to unsettle many people due to concerns over their privacy, and those concerns should be taken seriously first and foremost before the system is implemented on a larger scale. 


Advantages of ANPR

The ANPR system is quite an advantageous tool for police to quickly apprehend wanted criminals or find missing or stolen vehicles. The data can also be used to create the intelligence reports law enforcement needs to specify where their efforts should be focused on.