Current Practices in Electronic Surveillance in the Investigation of Serious and Organised Crime

Research output: Book/ReportReportCommissioned

The value of employing electronic surveillance in the investigation of some forms of serious crime, in particular organized crime, is unquestionable. It allows the gathering of information unattainable through other means. Some countries have utilized surreptitious electronic surveillance for nearly a century. For others it is a more recent phenomenon, and for some it is not yet utilized at all.

The use by law enforcement of electronic surveillance should not be an investigative tool of first resort, instead its use should be considered when other less intrusive means have proven ineffective or when there is no reasonable alternative to obtain crucial information or evidence. Even when electronic surveillance is appropriate, it will generally need to be used in conjunction with other investigation methods in order to be most effective.

The challenge is to develop a balanced system for the use of electronic evidence
gathering. Weighing carefully the effective use of electronic evidence gathering with the protection of citizens’ rights while at the same time reconciling the cost of utilizing these methods against the ultimate public benefit gained from a conviction.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherUnited Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNDCP)
Number of pages40
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

ID: 51651520