Police Project Eyewatch wins award

A NSW police online crime reporting project that utilises Facebook has claimed top honours at the Australian Business Awards.

Launched in August 2011, Project Eyewatch, which put the Neighbourhood Watch program online, has now been rolled out across 92 local area and specialist commands across the state.

Casino Neighbourhood Watch area co-ordinator Donna Maria Colbrelli Adams said the program has transformed crime reporting.

She said the Australian Business Award was well deserved recognition for a wonderful community-based project.

"It is an amazing tool for crime protection... its use is skyrocketing and the success rates are huge," she said.

"It's the best thing that could have happened for crime prevention to be able to go online and report crime immediately and be linked in with people from all around the world."

Mrs Adams said in just three months the Casino Neighbourhood Watch Facebook page had attracted 15,208 friends and fans.

She said the response from the community since the launch of Project Eyewatch at Casino in April had been fabulous.

"It's exciting to be able to reach a vast number of people with just one communication."

"By keeping our traditional community profile and linking that in with our Project Eyewatch Facebook profile we are able to get information out to those people in the community that don't have internet access."

Police minister , Michael Gallacher, said the awards recognise the police force's ability to adapt to changes in lifestyle through technology.

"Project Eyewatch was developed as a modern version of the Neighbourhood Watch program, acknowledging the increasing demands on day-to-day life," he said.

"Most people don't have time to attend community meetings regularly."

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