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We understand that some of our residents may have concerns about how we use ANPR. The way we continue to come under the scrutiny of the media, with transparency, accountability and governance at the heart of those concerns. There continues to be a gap between the operational police use of ANPR and the public knowledge of its use. Our self assessment tool will assist in reassuring you, our public, that ANPR cameras are there to protect our communities from harm.

Gloucestershire Constabulary Self Assessment
What is ANPR?

ANPR can check any number plate against a database of records of vehicles that are of interest to the Police

How does it work?

It is a technology which scans number plates to compare them against information stored in databases including the Police National Computer

How is it used?
  • It is used to identify stolen vehicles or those involved in crime
  • It can be used proactively to target criminals on specific operations
  • It is particularly useful for tracking and tackling travelling criminals, organised crime groups and terrorists
  • It provides lines of enquiry and evidence for forces throughout England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
  • It reduces the possibility of accidents by removing unsafe vehicles and drivers from our roads
  • It can be used to find stolen vehicles, tackle the use of vehicles without insurance and uncovering cases of major crime
  • It means officers can look out for offending or suspicious vehicles without disrupting law abiding drivers
  • It can confirm whether vehicles associated with a criminal or a crime has been in the area at the time of a crime and can dramatically speed up investigations
  • ANPR has been successful in the detection of many offences
  • It has resulted in five times the number of arrests compared to those by patrol officers operating without it 
Is ANPR diverting police from ‘normal’ duties?
  • ANPR doesn’t just target motoring offences. It can be used to catch all types of criminals who ‘happen’ to be on the road
  • It enhances policing of our streets and leads to more arrests and detection
How will ANPR help police fight crime?

Motor vehicles, roads and criminals are inter-linked

Isn’t it just another attack on the hard-pressed motorist?
  • ANPR has no impact on law-abiding motorists
  • More successful prosecutions could lead to a cut in insurance premiums
  • It is not another form of speed camera
Will it mean more police chases?

ANPR means better planning which should mean fewer high speed chases

What about my details?
  • ANPR data from Gloucestershire is sent to the National ANPR Data Centre (NADC) and stored for two years
  • ANPR data is only used for legitimate investigation purposes
  • ANPR data can only be accessed in most cases for up to 90 days
  • In serious, major or counter terrorism cases, ANPR data can be accessed for up to 2 years
Where are the cameras?
  • ANPR cameras are fitted within police vehicles and at fixed points around the county
  • For operational reasons, and in line with national policy, we do not say where they are as this would defeat the object
  • Before installing additional ANPR cameras, there has to be evidence of :
    • National security and counter terrorism
    • Serious, organised and major crime
    • Local crime
    • Lack of Community confidence and reassurance
    • Crime prevention and reduction
Page last updated: 11 January 2018