Mobile Data And Law Enforcement In The News
Many of you are aware of the FBI versus Apple encryption case that occurred a few years ago which addressed whether or not a court of law has the right to compel mobile phone manufacturers to unlock any devices that are encrypted. While this high profile case made international headlines, each week local and state law enforcement agencies are faced with the challenge of how best to save and export text messages for their own investigations and departmental needs.
Domo reports that last year over 561 billion texts were sent every month. Worldwide, mobile SMS messaging has now become the most widely used form of communication for a large percentage of the planet’s population. With this comes an increasing need for police and law agencies to have reliable software that can help them legally access an individualâs text message history.
Is Texting 911 The Same As Emergency Text Alerts
Many municipalities, states and even organizations such as churches offer emergency text alerts a practice that has grown more popular during the COVID-19 pandemic . Emergency alerts are when an organization sends you updates relevant to your personal safety, such as weather updates or social distancing guidelines. Typically you can not reply to these messages and they are not the same as texting 911.
Instructions For Police And Law Enforcement To Capture And Export Text Messages
is a desktop program used by many police departments and national investigative agencies to capture, save, and print text messages from any iPhone backup. The software also recovers certain deleted text messages which is an additional plus for law enforcement when attempting to gather evidence.
Follow these specific steps for law enforcement or police to save iPhone text messages to computer:
Back up an iPhone on a Windows or Mac computer.
Install Decipher TextMessage on the computer.
Choose a contact that has text messages you want to save.
Select “Export as PDF.”
Here is how Decipher TextMessage displays the text messages and attachments. Note the contact name and time/date stamp on every single text message, both sent and received!
Recommended Reading: Does A Police Report Show Up On A Background Check
Sign Up To Our Newsletters For All The Latest Near You
For more of the latest news, sign up to receive one of our daily or weekly newsletters.
Our teams at Cornwall Live, Devon Live and Plymouth Live are committed to bringing you the latest news, guiding you through this global pandemic and providing the stories that matter.
Our daily news email goes out every afternoon and offers a comprehensive overview of the day.
You can also sign up for the weekend report, to receive the top stories on a Saturday morning.
Or if you wanted something more specific, sign up to read our Truro, Exeter and Torbay newsletters.
Choose which newsletters apply to you from across our Devon and Cornwall titles here – so that you can stay informed, stay home and stay safe.
During the sentencing hearing prosecution barrister Nigel Wraith victim impact statements from both victims.
The first victim described how she is still haunted by the abuse and that it has a profound effect on her life. She, at one point, drove to a cliff to end her life and cant look at herself in the mirror.
The second victim spoke of how the abuse broke her and that she went off the rails, leading to problems for her and her children. She did however say she was pleased to finally be believed, and see Williams get his comeuppance.
Representing Williams, Hollie Gilbery highlighted Williams age, health and lack of previous convictions.
He added: People you behave in the way you did all those years ago are never safe from prosecution.
How To Text 911 In An Emergency
Can you text 911? The answer is: yes. You dont have to call during an emergency but can text 911 instead. Police services across the United States began implementing a program in 2014 that makes it possible for you to text 911 in many areas, since then, over 1,000 911 call centers have integrated this ability. Even though its best to call 911, especially because texting 911 is limited to specifics states, if texting is your only option then text-to-911 could be a lifesaver. Literally. Heres everything you need to know about how to text 911 so you can be prepared in a worst case scenario.
Don’t Miss: What Education Do You Need To Become A Police Officer
Advantages Of Texting 911
Since it became possible to text 911, emergency responders have noted several benefits of this way of communicating. Here are the pros of texting 911:
- If you cant talk: If you are fearing for your life or physical safety and dont want to let an abuser or intruder know youre contacting 911, texting 911 is obviously preferable to calling 911.
- Open pathways: During a weather emergency there are occasionally times when phone lines are jammed, in many of these instances SMS messages are still delivered. In these cases, texting 911 could be your best chance at getting through to an operator.
- Remote areas: If you are in a remote area with poor service and cant complete a call or stay connected long enough to explain your emergency, texting could help you get all of your information across in a more timely matter.
- Deaf or hard of hearing: People commonly wonder how deaf people call 911. The FCC recommends that the deaf or hard of hearing use a TTY when possible, but texting 911 could be a benefit if its available in your area and this is what youd prefer.
Recovery Of Deleted Iphone Text Messages
An additional benefit that Decipher TextMessage provides for Police Departments is the ability to recover certain deleted text messages that have been erased from an iPhone. Whether deleted iPhone data is recoverable all depends on what specific information remains in the iPhone backup and has not yet been overwritten by the iOS on the device in question.
It also depends on when the iPhone was last backed up. In order to check to see if any deleted messages are recoverable in the backup, simply open Decipher TextMessage, select “recover” in the menu, and you’ll be presented with any deleted data that is leftover in the backup and not erased.
If you are a law enforcement agency and have any questions about exporting iPhone text messages or recovering deleted iPhone text messages,simply send us an email via our product support page. We’re a USA based software company and we respond to everyone!
Don’t Miss: How Old Can You Be To Become A Police Officer
What Happens When You Text 911 In An Unsupported Area
If your area does not support texting 911, a bounce back message is immediate sent to you informing you that the message sending has failed. Carriers are required by the FCC to send you this message if you cant text 911 in your area. The goal is that these messages will reduce the risk of you believing your text has gone through to 911 when it was in fact undelivered. If you get a bounce back message, you need to call 911 rather than use SMS to text 911.
Even if your area does support text-to-911, calling 911 is still the most reliable way to get through.
Are Texts To 911 Quicker Than A Call
No. Voice calls are still the preferred method for contacting 911.
While South Sound 911 processes text messages in the same manner as voice calls to 911, texts are not as efficient as voice calls. Call takers cannot hear background noise to better ascertain the situation, and there are inherent delays when sending or receiving text replies.
Recommended Reading: What Education Is Required To Become A Police Officer
How An Unusual Text And Parents Instinct Led Police To Missing Madelyn Allen
A Utah college student who had gone missing was found by authorities with the help of a text message that she sent to her parents, even before she was reported missing.
Madelyn Allen, 19, a student at Snow College, Ephraim, was reunited with her family on 18 December after going missing five days earlier, said Snow College Police chief Derek Walk.
Ms Allen was allegedly held captive by Brent Neil Brown, 39, at his home in Loa, reported KTSU.
He is facing felony counts of aggravated kidnapping, rape, object rape and obstruction of justice, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in court.
We dont have a lot of information about him, said Mr Walk. We dont know how extensive his relationship or her knowledge of him is thus far.
Court documents show that the duo met online and decided to meet on 13 December, reported The Salt Lake Tribune.
College security footage shows Ms Allen leaving her dorm room on Monday night. Her roommates reported her missing, when she did not return the next day.
Court documents state that Mr Brown tied her up when he went to work. He also took away her phone and allowed her to text her family only once on the morning of 14 December.
He also took away her wallet and threw her phone when he discovered that the police were searching for it. He threatened her, saying if she left or told anyone about him, he would come after her family and sister, court documents added.
Benefits For Law Enforcement Who Use Decipher Textmessage To Export Iphone Text Messages
- No iPhone jailbreaking required.
- No iCloud password or iTunes password needed.
- Works on encrypted iTunes backups. A password to decrypt is required and the software will prompt law enforcement for this if needed.
- All text message data is private and local to the police departmentâs computer. No data is stored in the cloud or on servers.
- Exported text message can be printed and or saved as a PDF document for evidence in court or trial.
- Both iMessage data and regular SMS text message data are accessible.
- The software displays the contact info and time/date stamp on every single text message both sent and received.
Read Also: What To Do To Become A Police Officer
Send A Text Message To The Police
There is, perhaps, a common perception that young people have a monopoly on text messaging. Until recently, I was sure this was the case . But observing a pilot scheme, set in motion by police, has given me second thoughts. Oldsters, it seems are as fluent with their thumbs as teenagers.
The text message was clear and precise, informing the recipient that drug dealers had been operating on the same street all week. It went on to describe the car and the two dealers. Another message, in text teen-speak, declared a local park as unsafe because “stuff cud happen and no1 wud no”.
The messages form part of a steady stream of information being relayed to police and aimed at getting the public to engage with the police using the everyday language of text. The scheme in Gorton, Manchester, was rolled out earlier this year and was directed, initially, at younger residents as part of a survey asking where and why people feel unsafe.
Seven hundred residents now have the text number, along with children from local schools, but police intend to hand out leaflets at bus stops and supermarkets in the hope of enrolling the whole community.
The scheme, monitored by the National Policing Improvement Agency, taps into what Wilson calls the public’s familiarity with mobile phones and text messages. “They are no longer seen as technology,” he says, “They are part and parcel of everyday life and people feel comfortable with them.”
How To Report Harassing Text Messages To The Police
I am a child model who has experience being on television and music videos.
“Harassment” is legally defined as repeated, unwanted contact. This contact can come in any form, from in-person contact to internet or phone communications. Harassment via text message is yet another form that can be very brutal, emotional and scary for the individual being harassed.
Harassment does not have to be threatening to be “harassing.”
It can take the form of abusive messages or text message “spam.” Regardless of the situation, it is not legal nor justified and you have the right to take action.
Here are the specific steps to take in order to report a case of text harassment.
You May Like: How Can I Find A Police Officer By Name
Can I Text 111
No, unless you are deaf, hearing or speech impaired and have registered to use the emergency 111 TXT service. Texts from phones that are not registered won’t go through.
If you have an emergency, we need to know exactly where you are and what’s happening. The quickest way of gathering that information is to talk to you directly so in an emergency, call 111.
How To Text 911 For Help In An Emergency
What you need to know to help yourself.
Text 911 when you need help but can’t make any noise.
is the best way to reach out for help in an emergency situation, but if you can’t call or talk, you might be able to text. In 2014, police stations across America began rolling out Text-to-911, a program that lets people in trouble send a message in place of a call.
Whether you can’t make any noise because you don’t want to be discovered by an intruder, have a disability that prevents communicating with the operator or have poor cell reception and can’t get a voice call out, Text-to-911 is an important tool to keep in mind.
Here’s what you need to know if you ever have to text 911 for help. It’s one of many ways your phone can literally save your life.
Recommended Reading: How Do I Become A Reserve Police Officer
Texting 911 Has The Same Results As Calling 911 But With Added Safeguards For Texting:
- A citizen text comes in to the 911 system and their approximate location appears for the dispatcher on a computer-based map.
- The dispatcher texts the citizen back to confirm their location and phone number, and asks if it is safe to make a voice call. If the answer is no, the dispatcher will continue to text.
- The dispatcher will keep messages simple and to the point, using simple words and avoiding text lingo or abbreviations. The citizen texting is encouraged to do the same.
What Information Should An Emergency Text Message Contain
Create an SMS message containing the details below:
Which service? Need Ambulance, Coastguard, Fire Rescue, or Police
What? Briefly what is the problem
Where? Be as accurate as possible when giving the location. The better your information is the faster the emergency services will be able to send help. Using the App What3Words is a very easy and useful way to give your location, particularly in rural areas. Alternatively, the OSLocate app provides an immediate grid reference and is another valuable resource.
Read Also: Can You Get A Background Check At A Police Station
Following Are Important Considerations:
- Abuse of the text-to-911 system, such as texting fake emergencies, carries the same legal ramifications in the state of Missouri as abuse of 911 calls.
- St. Charles Countys text-to-911 service works only in this county.
- A text or data plan is required to place a text to 911.
- A text to 911 can only be between a dispatcher and one citizenno group texts.
- Text-to-911 is not available in roaming mode.
- As with all text messages, 911 text messages can take time to receive, may be delivered out of order, or may not be received at all. The sender should receive a “not delivered” message from their wireless carrier if a text did not go through. Calling 911 is preferred over texting 911 when it is practical and safe.
- For safety reasons, text-to-911 should not be used while driving.
How Does Text
You might think its weird to be able to text a landline, but its actually a very common way many people reach out to businesses and government services. In fact, if you own a business and dont have text-to-landline enabled you could be missing out on valuable customers who are texting you and getting no response. When you enable any number, even 911, with text-to-landline, you can set it up to allow for mass text messaging or two-way messaging from that number. This can be enabled for new numbers and toll free lines or existing numbers.
Recommended Reading: Where Can You Buy A Police Scanner
How To Text 9
How Do I Find Out More About Text
If you have more questions, the FCC is a great resource for more information about Text-to-911, or you can try searching for your city or county’s name with “text to 911” in the query to see if your local authorities have any best practices of their own.
As always, try to remain calm and aware in your surroundings, and make safety your top priority.
Read Also: How Do I Check My Police Record
This Story Is Part Of A Group Of Stories Called
Uncovering and explaining how our digital world is changing and changing us.
While Apple has made a big deal over the past few years about how little customer data it stores on its servers, that doesnt mean the iPhone maker doesnt have any information that police agencies can get their hands on.
As noted by The Intercept, one thing Apple knows is which phone numbers a person is at least considering sending a message to. Thats because as soon as an iPhone owner types in a phone number, Apples servers are pinged to determine whether the number represents another iOS device.
If so, Apple will send any messages using its own service . If not, Apple will send any messages as a standard text message .
That Apples servers would be pinged with every number a person is messaging should not come as a surprise. After all, how else would the iPhone know how to send the message?
More of a revelation was the fact that Apple stores the information for 30 days. Choosing how to send messages is tricky and has caused Apple problems in the past, especially when a user switches from iPhone to Android.
About three and a half years ago, Apple engineers started storing a cache of which numbers customers were trying to message in order to help identify bugs and address customer complaints, according to a source familiar with the companys efforts.
However, since Apple has crowed about how little data it stores on its customers, its definitely worth knowing what information it does keep.