Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are used to gauge crimes’ extents as well as establish which type of crimes prevail within a certain region for instance slums, street intersections, etc. , as GIS allow quick examination of the types and number of offences, arrests, etc. , within a particular radius, enabling quick elimination of excess information. GIS also allow analysts to determine the types and number of offences happening within a certain radius for example within 2 kilometres of all schools in a particular area. With GIS it is also possible to identify crime hotspots e. g. of burglaries, violent crimes, rape, etc. , because of their ability to offer consistent methods of measuring of crime concentration over time.
With quick and easy hotspot identification the police can be able to easily compare which areas require more attention than others or concentration of certain crimes, making it easy to predict crimes. The police can be able to overlay specific crimes with gender, age, ethnicity, etc. However, this could cause revelation of victims’ identities, although this may be unintentional.
Officers using GIS software and other sets of data can use laptops or other computers in their cars using crime-mapping tools. This way they can check the number of recently released probationers or parolees and their release conditions in order to determine when they violate those conditions. Among GIS software’s main advantages is that it enables co-ordination of vast multiple-source quantities of data in particular locations and enable coverage of very large geographical areas which would be difficult to analyse using traditional methods.
Moreover, GIS data is more resistant to damage, allow unlimited editing, is faster and much more efficient compared to manual crime-mapping processes, besides consuming less time and less money. These make it easier to update and manage GIS than in traditional systems. Nevertheless, some police officers may opt for traditional hotspot identification and management methods because sometimes computer information systems may be complicated. However, this can be solved by developing user-friendly systems. Therefore, GIS use in crime-mapping to identify hotspots is the way to go if crimes are to be dramatically checked.