Police app tracking sex offenders’ phones a ‘game changer’ in policing UK’s 60,000 pervs

The new police app is being labelled a ‘game changer’ (stock image) (Image: Getty)

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Sex offenders are having their phones tracked by a police app.

It can search for banned words, images or behaviour — include watching porn or posting sex chat on a forum.

Any sign of wrongdoing will send an email alert to police.

If the breach is serious enough the pervert can be hauled back to prison.

A source said: “This is a game changer. We believe it is a simple way to prevent serious harm.”

A Home Office-funded pilot of the E-Safe app in Nottinghamshire has been hailed a success. Another has taken place in Cumbria. Now senior officers hope for a nationwide roll-out involving Britain’s 60,000 registered sex offenders.

Phones of sex offenders will be tracked by the police (stock image)
(Image: Getty)

The app is used for offenders – including paedophiles and rapists – with court orders allowing digital monitoring.

It is installed with their consent, and monitors the screen and keyboard for images and text.

Detective Sergeant Steve Dalby, of Nottinghamshire police, said: “When the courts put in place restrictions on ­people’s online behaviour they do it for a very good reason.

“As the people charged with ensuring compliance with those orders we are constantly thinking of ways to identify people who think they can ignore them.”

The app is the latest trial of hi-tech policing. Not all are successful.

Last year appeal judges ruled that South Wales Police’s use of live facial recognition technology was unlawful. However it is still used in London.

The Home Office has spent at least £10million on the National Data Analytics Solution project, trialled by West Midlands Police, which is aiming to use collected data to predict crime.

The Home Office said: “The UK has some of the toughest powers in the world to deal with sex offenders and we are determined to support police officers in whatever way we can.

“That is why we provided £2.7million last year for offender managers which will enable police to make it easier to identify offenders online.”

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