Police officers investigated for inappropriate social media use

Police officers investigated for inappropriate social media use

Police officers investigated for inappropriate social media use

First published in News
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THIRTEEN police officers employed by the force covering Herefordshire have been investigated for their inappropriate use of social media.

One high ranking officer faced a grilling from bosses at West Mercia Police after disclosing information about work on a social networking site.

A police constable was given a written warning for accessing "inappropriate content" on a similar site, while a fellow constable was caught on a dating website.

Seven civilian staff members at West Mercia also faced action following breaches relating to the use of social media.

None of the 20 members of staff were dismissed for their actions.

The figures cover the period from January 2009 to February 2014 and were obtained following a Freedom of Information (FOI) request by the Press Association.

West Mercia said in a statement its employees "are accountable for whatever they put into the public domain", and must not post anything likely to discredit the force, even from a private account.

"Social media has revolutionised the way people communicate and share information and provides both forces (West Mercia and its partner Warwickshire) with new and innovative ways of engaging with and involving people in policing," said the statement.

"To enable our workforce to effectively use social media both forces have a Social Media Communications Policy and set of guidelines which inform our officers, staff and volunteers how to use social media in both a personal and professional capacity.

"The basic principle is that all officers, staff and volunteers are accountable for whatever they put into the public domain, even in a privately held account and must not behave in a way which is likely to discredit their police force.

"All officers, staff and volunteers are reminded that any comments made on social media will be deemed to be in the public domain and seen potentially as official police comment.

"Any inappropriate comments are dealt with by internal misconduct procedures."

Comments (4)

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6:24pm Fri 29 Aug 14

Gillian1961 says...

nothing is confidential any more you can not trust anybody any more if it not the police its the people who stand for the council, they are all dodgie,
nothing is confidential any more you can not trust anybody any more if it not the police its the people who stand for the council, they are all dodgie, Gillian1961
  • Score: 3

8:57pm Fri 29 Aug 14

p157 says...

It is still OK though, for senior officers to notify the media before they raid a celebritys property
It is still OK though, for senior officers to notify the media before they raid a celebritys property p157
  • Score: 7

7:16am Sat 30 Aug 14

Rita Jelfs says...

Police reflect a proportion of the British community, in their laziness, lack of imagination, and narcissism, spending time on social media, when they should be working.
Police reflect a proportion of the British community, in their laziness, lack of imagination, and narcissism, spending time on social media, when they should be working. Rita Jelfs
  • Score: 10

8:10pm Sat 30 Aug 14

fmrbill says...

Its all tripe that they write anyway, anything to stop walking the streets and taking to PEOPLE, they must think we are stupid, and bad leadership I think it shows.
Its all tripe that they write anyway, anything to stop walking the streets and taking to PEOPLE, they must think we are stupid, and bad leadership I think it shows. fmrbill
  • Score: 0
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