FBINAA CHARITABLE FOUNDATION 2020 SCIENCE AND INNOVATION AWARD NOMINEES T his year the Charitable Foundation Science and Innovation Steve Cox, Vice-Chair, FBINAA Charitable Foundation

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Award received eight nominations for programs, projects, products, and individuals. Since the purpose of this award is to recognize and promote creative thinking and problem-solving, it is worthwhile to share each nomination. Maybe a project or program can be replicated in your agency or community; maybe it can be adapted to fit your unique needs; or maybe it will spark a totally new idea that you can put to work. Every one of these nominations is worthy of the spirit of our award.


Fraudulent Gift Card Initiative – Shakopee, MN Shakopee, Minnesota is a city of 41,000 population with major tourism attractions and many retail businesses. In the five years prior to 2019, crimes of fraud were among the top three of- fenses reported to police. A large part of the problem was fraudu- lent purchase of third-party gift cards, resulting in significant loss for the retail community. In 2018, the Shakopee Police Department devised a plan to attack the problem of fraudulent third-party gift cards by draft- ing and promoting a city ordinance. The department contacted all 34 local businesses which would be impacted and solicited their participation. Despite initial opposition from large national retailers, the department determined to push ahead. They also enlisted the local Chamber of Commerce and the Minnesota Retailers Association as part of the coalition. As a group, the police department and all the other stakeholders – including the national big box stores - worked through the issues and drafted a city ordinance for consideration by the Shakopee City Council. This effort consumed an entire year. In June 2019, the Shakopee Police Department presented the draft ordinance to the City Council. Because of the groundwork laid by the department and its partners, the ordinance was ad- opted by a unanimous vote as a consensus item. It is worth noting that the ordinance is the first of its kind in the nation, as far as can be determined. It is aimed at curbing the fraudulent purchases of loadable, third-party gift cards from credit card companies. The ordinance prohibits any purchase of gift cards at a self-checkout kiosk, and it also requires anyone using a credit card to purchase a loadable, third-party gift card from either Visa, American Express, or Mastercard to show a government issued photo ID matching the name on the credit card being used to purchase the gift card. In the first year, the ordinance has eliminated nearly 99% of these frauds in the community. In another great cooperative ef- fort, the department worked with Shakopee High School students to evaluate the program and survey impacted businesses as

Chief Jeff Tate accepts the Science and Innovation Award on behalf of the Shakopee Police Department (MN), pictured with the City of Shakopee Mayor Bill Mars.

the one-year mark approached. The results demonstrated great support from local businesses and showed a drastic reduction in these types of frauds, with only one case violating the ordinance since its passage. It is estimated to have saved victim businesses some $25,000 in losses, and the department notes it has saved $28,000 in officer time spent investigating these crimes. The Foundation recognizes the very patient, creative, and collabora- tive problem-solving approach used by the Shakopee Police Department before, during, and after the adoption of the fraudu- lent gift card ordinance. The results speak for themselves.

For more information: Chief Jeff Tate , jtate@shakopeemn.gov

Here is brief summary of the remaining seven nominees, in alphabetical order, with contact information.

ACCURINT VIRTUAL CRIME CENTER NATIONWIDE PUBLIC SAFETY DATA EXCHANGE Washington, D.C. Accurint Virtual Crime Center , a LexisNexis program, com- bines the power of public records with nationwide law enforcement data in a cross-jurisdictional public safety data exchange. The pro- gram links public records information with public safety RMS data from law enforcement in a CJIS secure data exchange. A Google-like search returns identity matches with 99.99% certainty. Investigators and analysts can make queries nationwide, tailoring those searches to be most relevant for their needs. Patrol officers can have more information about a subject before ever contacting the individual.

For more information: Jennifer Safir , Jennifer.safir@lnssi.com

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