London, Sept 19 (ANI): Motorists in the UK have of late expressed fear and discomfort over reports of police asking other motorists to spy on each other for incidents of poor driving.
Alarm is being expressed about the possibility of a 'Big Brother' state being created within the country. Critics have likened the scheme to the East German Stasi - which encouraged residents to inform upon one another.
According to the Daily Mail, critics have warned that these detailed reports could easily be used to maliciously accuse neighbours, and subject them to long and extensive investigation.The tabloid reports that details are being checked against DVLA databases and the Police National Computer.
It further reveals that anybody who is reported twice in 12 months faces police action - despite never being caught breaking the law.
Officers say they can be considered 'repeat offenders'.
The action could involve a warning letter or even a knock on the door from a police officer.
The force that is piloting the scheme, Sussex, has already received 20,488 reports.
They are made online - with the accused driver never knowing who is responsible.
Freedom of Information requests reveal 2,695 drivers have received 'letters of advice following reports of their driving'.
A further 1,047 drivers have had 'sanctions imposed on them'. This happens when the reports lead to police discovering offences such as an out-of-date tax disc.
Police say it protects the public against dangerous drivers.
If successful, the so-called Operation Crackdown it is likely to be rolled out nationwide. The scheme is being promoted using a taxpayer-funded newsletter, called Vibe. (ANI)