Anonymous reports can lead to faster law enforcement response, agency says
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) Wildlife Alert System has begun using “a safe and effective new system for submitting anonymous tips,” the agency has announced.
Members of the public may contact FWC law enforcement “by downloading an easy-to-use iPhone or Android app: FWC Wildlife Alert,” a news release points out.
“The new Tip411 system will enable the public to anonymously communicate with members of FWC law enforcement via text, which will allow officers to receive the information they need to address violations more quickly and efficiently,” the release explains. “The new system replaces the Tip@MyFWC.com text and email functions, which have been phased out of operation,” the release adds.
Nonetheless, the release points out, “You can still submit anonymous text tips by text, phone or via the FWC website.”
To report a violation, a person can use any one of the following methods, the release says:
- Download the iPhone or Android FWC Wildlife Alert app from your phone’s app store.
- Send a text to 847411 (Tip411) with keyword “FWC,” followed by the location and any information you can provide about the violation.
- Call the Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-FWCC (888-404-3922).
- Submit a tip online at MyFWC.com/WildlifeAlert.
“We are excited to begin using the new Tip411 system to connect the public and FWC law enforcement,” said Wildlife Alert Board Chair Virginia “Jenny” Brock in the release. “We believe in this digital age the text and app options will increase public safety and conservation efforts by encouraging more people to report violations,” she added in the release.
The Wildlife Alert program began more than 30 years ago, to encourage the public to contact FWC with information regarding wildlife violations, the release explains. When the information leads to a citation or arrest, the tipster is eligible to receive reward money ranging from $100 to $1,000, it points out.
The FWC Wildlife Alert Program is administered by the Wildlife Alert Reward Association, which is funded primarily by court ordered fines paid by violators, the release adds. The members of the association promote the program and raise private, tax-deductible, charitable donations to supplement the rest of the fund, the release says.