July 14, 2019 | Written by: Zeev Mindali, CTO and Co-founder, Repo Cyber Ltd. and Yehuda Solomon, CEO and Co-founder, Repo Cyber Ltd.
Categorized: Apps | Industry
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The percentage of people reporting crimes on their own initiative is close to zero. Law enforcement officials are well aware that vital information may fail to reach them, often due to informants’ fear of exposure.
Repo Cyber Ltd. is a startup company in Israel offering a mobile app for anonymous reporting to law enforcement organizations. The app can identify 80 different worldwide languages. It can gain insight from text, audio, pictures and video and transmit using the same methods. It also determines the relevant authority that would need the information.
Developing a pilot solution to anonymously report crime and help cities streamline services
The Repo Cyber app uses the Repo AI system, which was developed during our participation in the IBM Global Entrepreneur Program. Repo AI runs on the IBM Cloud platform.
Our initial vision was to simplify police reporting, but when we started to work, we realized that there is also a demand for cognitive services and machine learning. Thus, the foundation of Repo AI includes IBM Watson among other IBM technologies, including IBM Identity and Access Management solutions.
With Watson, we taught Repo AI how to recognize things like a dirty street, full garbage can, fighting children, and so much more.
During a pilot program in the city of Kiryat Yam, municipal employees were initially concerned that the system would replace them. They soon realized, though, that the app was changing the scale and type of work coming through. As it turned out, municipal employees got more reports from citizens with fewer calls to the Command & Control (C&C) Center. Because Repo AI can be integrated with smart city cameras, it can identify many situations proactively and route reports directly to the appropriate department, such as sanitation, electricity, healthcare or welfare.
Though the C&C Center in Kiryat Yam is staffed with only Hebrew speakers, it can now support Russian, Amharic, Rumanian, Arabic, Yiddish and more languages through multicloud language services for wider citizen support.
Delivering significant citizen benefits with Repo AI technology
With the easy-to-use and -learn Repo Cyber app, any citizen or tourist can anonymously report a concern to authorities without exposing their identity. This protects individuals, their families and their properties, making citizens more willing to share concerns and report crime. C&C operators also have an almost instantaneous (within seconds) situation alert, so they can engage quickly and stop threatening events before they escalate.
Pilot program reporting has increased by more than 30 percent now that foreign-language speakers now have the option to report. C&C representatives have reduced the amount of time to handle a complaint by 20 percent, while also increasing the efficiency of municipal employees by 20 percent. Law enforcement efficiency has increased by more than 35 percent.
Kiryat Yam municipal employees, who now recommend the Repo AI system to other municipalities, also use the Repo AI technology to stay informed while in the field. For example, they can use the app to see real-time city camera feeds and search for license plates or people.
When the pilot ended, Kiryat Yam adopted the Repo Cyber system. Aside from use in other large cities, we envision that corporate entities could use the system for anonymously reporting workplace bullying or sexual harassment. Additionally, perhaps a network of law enforcement agencies could more easily share information, such as a suspect, known terrorist, or runaway databases. By working with corporations and law enforcement agencies, we hope to make our world safer.
Read the case study for more details about the IBM solutions helping power the Repo Cyber app.