Feeds

Crimestoppers benefits from recession-hit grasses

Hard times mean no honour among thieves

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Snitching hotline Crimestoppers has reported it's on a bit of a roll purging the UK's streets of crims - thanks to boracic citizens increasingly willing to grass for cash.

According to the Times, reward payments for crimebusting tip-offs in 2008-09 hit £35,000 - "the highest recorded payout in 11 years and is topped only by payments made in the 1990s, at the peak of that decade’s economic downturn".

The charity's chief exec, Mick Laurie, said: “Looking at Crimestoppers’ statistics over the past few years, some may conclude that there might be a correlation between the number of people claiming rewards and the recession.”

Indeed, among the reports Crimestoppers received was that of the commuter who rang his missus from a bus and told her to stage a burglary at their home so they could claim on the insurance. A fellow passenger overheard the mobile phone conversation and called it in.

Another, demonstrating the credit crunch effect on honour among thieves, involved a prisoner who asked his other half to “shop” him for a robbery he had committed "so that she could claim the Crimestoppers reward". Another lag decided he'd prefer the cash himself and grassed him up.

A less successful attempt to swell the personal coffers came from one sharp-eyed citizen who insisted he'd seen Osama bin Laden coming out of Tesco.

Crimestoppers has around 30 "handlers" who field up to 600 such calls a day, which contribute to the annual total of 220,000 telephone and email tip-offs. Info which results in a conviction for a serious crime can earn the informant £10,000, while a similar result for a lesser crime might be worth £1,000.

In fact, as the Times notes, just one per cent of Brits who contact Crimestoppers actually claim a reward - as opposed to 80 per cent of those who get in touch with the Stateside equivalent. The charity has, since setting up shop in 1988, coughed more than £1m in rewards.

Cash aside, Crimestoppers is celebrating a "personal best" during 2008-9 when it helped police "solve 85 murder cases across Britain in 2008-09, a figure that includes at least 20 per cent of all solved murders in the capital". ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Critical Adobe Reader and Acrobat patches FINALLY make it out
Eight vulns healed, including XSS and DoS paths
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.