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Social Media Offences - 1293/19

Date Responded 19 November 2019

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:

1. Please state the number of offence records listed in your crime database that contain the following keywords:

Kik

Telegram

Wickr

Vkontakte

Snapchat

Reddit

Tik Tok

Tumblr

Please identify these by conducting a free text search of your crime database, and provide information for each of the last five financial years, and the current financial year to 02.10.19.

2. Please provide a breakdown of the kind of offences recorded that included these keywords, for each individual keyword.

3. Please provide an anonymised copy of free text report for each incident recorded.

In Response:

We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Corporate Development Department of Northumbria Police.  I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police however cannot be disclosed for the following reasons.

The information requested is not held in a format that allows its extraction within the permitted 18 hours.  Initial searches made for the time period specified by your request has brought back 1,144 records.  To provide the information requested in your application would far exceed the permitted 18 hours.  Even at a conservative estimate of 3 minutes per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to extract this information would take in excess of 57 hours, therefore Section 12(1) of the Freedom of Information Act would apply.  This section does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimated that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit of 18 hours, equating to £450.00.

You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act for your request.

As part of your request would exceed the prescribed limit, as defined by the Act, there is no requirement for Northumbria Police to provide a response to the remaining parts of your request.  However, in order to provide you with some assistance, under Section 16 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, an initial assessment of the information that may be provided within the time constraints would be questions 1 and 2 only.

You should note that had Section 12 not been fully applicable other exemptions would have been considered and applied where relevant, and this may also be the case if a resubmission is made.

If this would be useful, you may wish to refine and resubmit your request accordingly.

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