U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Tip Line Technologies: Intelligence Gathering and Analysis Systems: Phase I Final Report and Executive Summary

NCJ Number
Date Published
July 2005
89 pages
This report details the progress made during the first phase of a federally funded project to create all the necessary research and knowledge infrastructure for the development of a tip line protocol and technology.
Knowing the role that information can play in improving law enforcement success during critical incidents, the concern is how agencies can obtain, record, store, process, analyze, disseminate, and operationalize information and intelligence towards the ultimate goal of resolving critical incidents quickly and effectively. Tip lines have become an increasingly common response technique in these incidents and the solicitation of information through a tip line process can take a variety of forms, such as dedicated phone lines and Internet Web sites. To develop a more comprehensive understanding of the utility of tip lines as well as to create practice-informed protocols and technologies to optimize law enforcement agencies’ ability in obtaining information, the Department of the Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command Division (SPAWAR) directed funds allocated by the National Institute of Justice to improve tip line technology. The goal is to develop operational protocols and the information technologies necessary to facilitate the immediate collection and analysis of information in crucial or “high-intensity” incidents which demand a quick resolution. The project is divided into three phases. This report represents phase I in which both theoretical and practical needs for improving tip line use through a number of activities, including reviewing existing knowledge about information, information technology, tip lines, and information-driven deployment in policing were assessed. The report also presents the results of a broad survey of tip line use in the United States, and examined three specific cases of tip line use. From the surveys it was found that tip line processes and their technologies are widely under-utilized, employ low levels of technology, and do not use analytic functions. References and appendixes A-C

Date Published: July 1, 2005