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Five things you need to know about new tech and county lines

Crest Advisory and Forensic Analytics are collaborating on a research project on the role of technology in ‘county lines’ – the name given to drug dealing where urban gangs or organised crime groups (OCGs) move drugs around the country, usually from cities to smaller towns and rural areas. Mobile communications are an essential feature of county drug lines, yet the role of technology as a causal factor in the growth of county lines has often been neglected in research and commentary.

  1. There should be more consideration about 5G licensing conditions to ensure network providers cooperate with police and other agencies that would avoid a repeat of the problems policing faced after providers switched to 3G and 4G.
  2. Building on our previous blog ‘Running out of credit’ we warn that artificial intelligence could be used to groom young people on social media, as happens in other types of crime.
  3. County lines gangs could copy legitimate retail methods to make them more efficient & reduce risks of being caught. Methods could include automated systems of supply and delivery.
  4. County lines gangs will take advantage of end-to-end encryption messaging apps posing problems for police and other agencies who may struggle to access the content of messages.
  5. Decentralised messaging networks mean there’s no single point of oversight so law enforcement agencies do not have a clear channel through which to request data records.

You can read the full piece on the Crest website.

If you want to find out more how our solutions can help you in the fight against drugs lines, head to our CSAS page and request a demo.

If this resonates with you, let’s discuss.