Essex: New system allows crime updates by text

Messages were found on Stean's phone

Messages were found on Stean's phone - Credit: PA

A new system to share crime information and prevention advice via text message to people in Essex has begun.

Launching today Essex Community Messaging (ECM) will send messages and notifications to people who request updates.

The messages can be sent by email, text or voice message depending on individual preferences.

The project has been jointly funded by the Police and Crime Commissioner and from money seized from criminals under the Proceeds Of Crime Act.

ECM is free of charge to everyone who lives or works in Essex.

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Police, Essex Watch liaison officers and other partners such as Neighbourhood Watch will be able to send messages using the system, which was specifically designed for Essex.

it is hoped the system will make information sharing between police and public much faster.

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People can choose what information they receive, including issues they have an interest in such as scams, web crime or rural crime.

Nick Alston, Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said: “Essex Community Messaging will get key crime and crime prevention information out to communities faster than ever before.

“It will also improve the two-way flow of information about community safety between Essex Police, Neighbourhood and other Watch groups, and the people of Essex.

“We need to help communities join Essex Police in the fight against crime.

“Whether it is through reporting suspicious behaviour or learning about simple measures to take to prevent crime, ECM will provide a crucial new channel for keeping our communities safe.

“I urge everyone to register now for ECM.”

Chief Supt Luke Collison, ECM project lead, said: “I am convinced that Essex Community Messaging will significantly enhance the quality of communication between Essex Police, key partners and the communities that we serve.

“I look forward to seeing ECM grow and develop over the coming months, as more and more people who live or work in our county sign up.”

Examples of messages which could be sent include a specific crime trend in a certain area, asking for people’s help in a missing person search, or encouraging the reporting of suspicious behaviour.

Alan Johnson, chairman of the Essex County Neighbourhood Watch Association, added: “We’re delighted that we now have a brand new messaging system.

“We look forward to improving our ability to help Essex Police reduce the level of crime across our county.”

To register for the service go to

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