Everyday security: a MEDI@4SEC workshop on the use of social media to strengthen public security

“This workshop has motivated me to work further on the use of social media for public security.” – Workshop participant

Barcelona, Spain, November 2017 – The recent massive increase in the use of social media has drastically transformed people’s communication and information habits, providing authorities with new intelligence sources and platforms for communication and engagement. These platforms could contribute to strengthen the daily management of security and local crime prevention strategies. In particular, they could contribute to preventing and responding to offences committed in public spaces that  threaten the security – actual or perceived – of the community in its daily life.

Efus organised a workshop on this theme, as part of the European MEDI@4SEC project, on the eve of its international “Security, Democracy and Cities” conference, in Barcelona, on 14 November. Participants included representatives of law enforcement agencies, national and local authorities, industry, researchers  and social media companies from 17 countries.

The workshop explored the opportunities and threats in using social media to improve the daily activities of security actors, which are multiple and varied. The presentations and discussions focused on three main activities:  social media uses to increase engagement, reputation, transparency and legitimacy and to communicate and interact directly with citizens; social media uses to prevent unrest and signal suspicious situations (intelligence) and as a tool to analyse large open data to improve crime prediction and prevention, and lastly social media information used by the police to track down offenders.  


This workshop was also an opportunity for participants from all over Europe to network and exchange on communication, prevention, prediction and enforcement tasks in regards to social media.

The MEDI@4SEC project was also represented at Efus’ international conference through an open workshop on the use of technologies for crime prevention as well as an exhibition stand where the project’s partners as well as conference-goers could meet and further exchange.

The report on this workshop will be available in a few weeks. In the meantime, to keep informed about all the MEDI@4SEC activities please join the MEDI@4SEC’s Community by signing up on the dedicated website.

You may also join our LinkedIn Group and follow us on Twitter @MEDIA4SEC.

 Presentations from the workshop are available online: