How Disc supports rural and wildlife crime reduction

How Disc supports rural and wildlife crime reduction

The National Wildlife Crime Unit has adopted Disc as its information-sharing platform. This follows the decision by the national police-led operation tackling hare coursing and poaching, Operation Galileo, to use Disc, and the system’s adoption by two police forces to support their local rural crime reduction efforts.

The NWCU’s job is to obtain and disseminate information from a wide range of organisations, and assist police forces across the UK in wildlife crime investigation. Its current priorities focus on trade in endangered species, cyber-enabled wildlife crime, poaching and hare coursing, and crime related to badgers, bats, freshwater pearl mussels and birds of prey.

Information gathered by the NWCU, as well as Op Galileo, needs to be disseminated quickly and efficiently to rural crime police officers throughout the country. Because each Disc system can link directly with any other, not only does this support closer and more effective interworking between the two organisations but also with police officers countrywide.

Linking the Disc systems at the NWCU and Op Galileo with police forces’ own Disc systems – currently implemented by rural crime reduction teams in two constabularies – means this information can be disseminated not only to local police officers but also direct to rural businesses and other relevant groups throughout each forces’ area.

Says Disc Managing Director Steve Lang: “Rural crime is highly sophisticated, and criminals are highly mobile. We’re excited to see Disc playing a role in keeping police across the country informed about rural crime and the criminals behind it and, at local level, better prepared to identify it, and address it, when it occurs in their own area”.

Eleven new Disc customers so far in 2023

Eleven new Disc customers so far in 2023

From West Yorkshire to Cornwall, 2023 has started well for Disc, with eleven new customers across the country.

Joining Businesses Against Crime in Leeds (read more here) ten other business crime reduction schemes have joined the Disc network so far this year.

Hinckley BID has chosen Disc to support retailers throughout the Hinckley area, becoming the sixth Disc system in Leicestershire; in addition to investing in Disc it has also signed up for our Disc Administration Service (DAS).

Herefordshire Against Nighttime Disorder (HAND) has taken Disc ‘SC’ (for ‘segregated content’) to support existing and new pubwatches across the county.  With Disc SC, HAND can administrate any number of local pubwatches from a single Disc implementation.

No less than four Disc systems have been implemented so far this year in Essex.  In both Romford and Chelmsford,  Business Improvement Districts have adopted Disc to support their retail levy-payers.  Meanwhile Uttlesford and Thannet District Councils have each funded a Disc system to support local pubwatches;  here Disc will be directly administrated by Essex Police.

Joining the lead of fellow Sussex District Council Wealden, who implemented Disc to support businesses throughout its area, now Mid Sussex District Council has implemented its own Disc system, launched by Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner Katie Bourne this month (see top picture).  Both councils are using the Disc Administration Service (DAS) for day-to-day management of their systems.  In neighbouring Kent, Sevenoaks has also joined the Disc network, where a total of 15 business crime reduction partnerships now use Disc to drive down low-level business crime and anti-social behaviour.

And in the West Country we’re delighted to welcome St Ives BID to the Disc network as well as Plymouth Against Retail Crime which has acquired a second Disc system to support its move into the local night-time economy.  These two new implementations bring the total number of Disc systems across the Devon & Cornwall policing area to 10.

Incident reporting for retailers: why it’s important – and easy

Incident reporting for retailers: why it’s important – and easy

Disc is helping drive down low-level crime and antisocial behaviour right across the UK.

Thousands of retailers participate in local Disc systems in more than 550 towns and city-centres across the UK, sharing awareness about local crime, safety and security issues and information about local offenders and exclusion schemes.

Research tells us that small, independent stores tend to report more than larger retailers; to a small outlet even a £50 theft can have a big impact, sometimes being the difference between making a profit or a loss that day.

By contrast many larger retailers report less than 5 per cent of incidents to police. For them a £50 single loss is very different, and they may feel that process of reporting costs more than the loss itself. Lengthy delays on the 101 police non-emergency helpline and the belief that police won’t always follow up such reports adds to their apathy.

However, for Business Crime Reduction Schemes to perform optimally, it’s important for all stores to be totally engaged and to report ALL incidents. Only that way will police be properly aware of the real issues, and make resource allocation decisions accordingly.

This is where Disc comes in. Reporting Incidents on Disc is quick – it takes just a couple of minutes – and it’s incredibly easy to do. Contact, store and location details are auto-populated, saving time and increasing accuracy. Information is shared efficiently, with photo galleries, news, alerts, and Instant Messages all invaluable tools for staff, managers and low-prevention (LP) specialists.

Disc helps retailers work better and closer with the police, by self-managing low-level crime so police don’t need to – but also by identifying prolific offenders, enabling the police to focus their limited resources on pursuing them through the criminal justice process.

And, as important as anything else, Disc is ‘compliant by design’:  all information is shared securely and in full compliance with Data Protection Law and GDPR.

BACIL chooses Disc

BACIL chooses Disc

Business Against Crime in Leeds (BACIL) – one of the UK’s longest-established, and largest, Business Crime Reduction Partnerships – has adopted Disc as its information-sharing platform Disc.

Businesses Against Crime in Leeds – or BACIL – supports over 420 Members across Leeds City Centre from both the day-time and night-time economies. It also works in partnership with Leeds City Council, West Yorkshire Police, Safer Leeds and other bodies across the city to actively reduce crime.

Says BACIL manager Sean Walker: “We know Disc has always been a great system, but we have been especially impressed with the way it has evolved over the years.”

BACIL had previously used the SentrySiS database and reporting system.

According to Sean: “We can see the benefits of Disc in the way it enables current awareness information to be shared, maximising engagement with members. But we also like the way it really helps with compliance with GDPR. And as Disc has spread around the country, it provides us with everything we need to support BACIL and its members here in Leeds.

“It can also link us into other organisations using Disc not only in West Yorkshire but more widely too.  So, for example, as a member of National Business Crime Solution, which is another Disc user, we can now receive their Alerts direct into our Disc system and pass them to our Members even quicker”.

Sean also added “The one thing that has impressed not only me, but my Team and all of our Users, is how much easier Disc is to access and use. It delivers exactly what we need at a very competitive price – but most importantly, the assistance and support from the Disc Team has been second to none!”

Says Disc’s MD Steve Lang:  “We’re absolutely delighted that BACIL has decided to move to Disc. It’s always been considered one of the country’s leading BCRPs and it’s an important feather in our cap to count it among our customers”.

BACIL is the fourth Disc implementation in the West Yorkshire policing area, joining Wakefield and Huddersfield BIDs and, in the heart of the city, the Leeds Victoria shopping centre.

‘Tis the season…to review your GDPR compliance documentation

‘Tis the season…to review your GDPR compliance documentation

‘Tis the season to be jolly – and a really good time to review your scheme documentation! Business Crime Reduction Schemes must be GDPR compliant. Part of that is having the correct documentation within Disc, but it’s also vital that you review them periodically – and keep a record of any changes and the date of the review.

We at Disc are GDPR nerds, and proud of it, and to make things easier for BCRS Data Controllers we’ve identified the documents you need to ensure your scheme complies with legal obligations and ‘Best Practice’. All are available in the form of ‘model’ documents to customers and non-customers, completely free of charge.

The essential scheme documentation that we recommend should be in place comprises:

1)        Legitimate Interest Assessment

We recommend that your Legitimate Interest Assessment is made up of three sections: the Legitimate Interest Statement, a Data Protection Impact Assessment, and a Balance of Interests Assessment.

The purpose of your Legitimate Interest Statement is to assert your right to share information in order to protect your Members’ premises, property, staff, customers or contractors from low-level crime and ASB.  The document needs to define precisely the kind of processing involved (such as sharing Offenders’ data with your Members).  And it must explain why, for such purposes, it’s necessary to process Offenders’ personal data without their consent.

The Data Protection Impact Assessment outlines any impacts that you processing may have on Offenders – including intended impacts such as banning them from Members’ premises, but also any possible unintended impacts (for example, sharing Offenders data outside your Membership).  Where unintended impacts are identified, the document must show what processes you have put in place to mitigate them.

The last section is your Balance of Interests Assessment. Here you must show that you have balanced your Members’ rights against the rights and freedoms of the Offenders whose data you process. And you must document the reasons why, I your opinion, the former outweighs the latter.

2)          Record of Processing Activity

The second essential GDPR document, this is a statement of what data you’re going to be processing and an at-a-glance summary of all the types of processing that you, undertake, the purposes of processing, your lawful basis for the processing and the ‘technical’ and the ‘organisational’ security measures in place.

3)          Constitution

If your scheme is set up as an unincorporated association, or as a company limited by guarantee, you must have a Constitution which sets out the rights and roles of your Members, the way they elect their Board of Management, the roles and responsibilities of the Board, rules for voting, qualification for membership etc.

4)          Rules and Protocols

This document isn’t required by GDPR – but it’s an essential one if you plan to share Offenders’ data with your Members.  It defines how the scheme works, the obligations of your Members and other policies of the scheme, for example how it may process the data of young Offenders if your scheme chooses to do so.

We call your Rules & Protocols a ‘Must-Read Document’ – your Members must read, understand and agree to abide by it. The document makes each Member aware what they can (and sometime must) do, or not do.  It also protects your scheme  from ‘vicariously liability’ if a Member disregards any of the rules and in the process, for example, breaches data protection law including GDPR.

5)          Privacy Notice for Offenders

GDPR makes it obligatory that your scheme tells Offenders exactly what your legal basis is for processing their data (in this case, ‘Legitimate interest’), what you’re going to do with it, how long you’re going to retain it, how they can contact you to ascertain what information you’ve got and how they can make a complaint about you, as Data Controller, to the Information Commissioners Officer.

6)          Privacy Notice for Members

GDPR also makes it obligatory that your scheme tells its Members exactly what its legal basis is for processing their data (in this case, ‘consent’) and what it will do with it.  It’s a short document (you’ll probably only be processing Members’ contact details for the purpose of administrating the scheme) but it too must inform Members of their rights under GDPR, how to complain to you and, in the very remote chance that they may wish to complain to the Information Commissioners Officer, how to do so.

Because it is obligatory under law to provide this privacy information to your Members, this too is a Must-Read Document.  Like your Rules & Protocols (see above) you can add this to your Disc system so that all Members are obliged to confirm they have read and understood it when they self-certify in Disc, before they can gain access to your data.

7)          Exclusion / Warning Notices

If you run an Exclusion Scheme, you’ll need an Exclusion Notice (and a Warning Notice too, if you give Offenders an official warning before excluding them).  If it’s practical, you can use these documents as your Offenders’ Privacy Notice so Offenders will be told not only how they will be treated within the scheme but also how and why the scheme processes their personal data (see Offender’s Privacy Notice above).

These are the seven essential documents – though, depending on your scheme, there may be others that are pertinent to you – for example, if you operate a radio network, you may need a radio policy. In Disc, if you wish, you can designate these as Must-Read Documents too, in which case Members will be obliged to certify against them before they can access the data in your Disc system.

This may all seem daunting, but we’ve taken away the hard work with our recently updated templates. To make it easier still, we offer a document writing service, producing all your essential Scheme and GDPR documentation, uploading them into the correct place within your Disc system and checking that your system is correctly configured to match your documentation.

Normally this service costs £250 + Vat but, as it’s the season of goodwill, we’re offering this service at the special price of £200 + Vat until 31st January 2023.

So if your New Year’s Resolution is to be efficient, effective and compliant get in touch today!  Email us on or call 01273 900468.

Fifteen new Disc systems and first DAS customers announced

Fifteen new Disc systems and first DAS customers announced

Among new customers since the last edition of Disc@Work: Newquay, Rushmoor, Chichester, Loughborough, Neston, Wokingham, Tonbridge & Malling, Thanet, Swale, Peterborough, Dover, Wrexham and Derbyshire Dales. And Wealdon and Peterborough have signed up for our new Disc Administration Service.

Newquay BID becomes our fifth Disc implementation in Cornwall joining St Austell, Redruth, Penzance and Truro.  Together with three Disc systems in Devon this brings the number of Disc implementations in the Devon & Cornwall policing area to eight.

With the business crime reduction partnerships of Swale, Dover, Thanet, Tonbridge & Malling and Gravesham signing up for Disc, the number of Disc implementations in Kent has now reached 15.

Other Disc systems confirmed since the last edition of Disc@Work include Neston in Cheshire, a second Disc system for Loughborough BID in Leicestershire, a second Disc implementation in Chichester, Sussex, and Disc systems in Wokingham in Berkshire and Rushmoor in Hampshire.

Derbyshire Business Crime Reduction Partnership has acquired a third Disc system to cover the Dales and High Peak areas, completing its county-wide coverage.

We’re also delighted to confirm that two existing customers have signed up for our new Disc Administration Service (DAS), bringing the number of Disc systems administrated through DAS to three.  Click  here to read about DAS.

DAS: outsourcing Disc administration to the experts

DAS: outsourcing Disc administration to the experts

Until now, Disc customers have had to implement and manage their own Disc systems themselves.  Now, with our new Disc Administration Service (DAS), they can outsource the work to Littoralis.  For organisations looking to set up a business crime reduction scheme for the first time, the benefits are obvious and compelling.

Business crime reduction schemes using Disc are proven to reduce local low-level crime and anti-social behaviour. So it’s not surprising that Business Improvement Districts, Chambers of Commerce and police are keen to support such schemes in their own areas.

But for many of them, setting a scheme up properly, running it in compliance with seemingly complex legal obligations, and ensuring it is effectively administrated, can be daunting.

DAS enables such organisations to outsource the management of their Disc systems to us here at Littoralis. We have in-depth specialist understanding of how schemes must be structured to ensure they are run legally, and of course no one knows better than us how to use Disc to run successful schemes and maximise engagement with users.

The initial DAS ‘onboarding’ process includes a complete review of customers’ requirements to make sure their system is set up properly to comply with legal obligations and Best Practice, including all necessary documentation.

Onboarding also covers configuring the Disc system to reflect precisely the way the customer wants its scheme to operate. That includes, for example, configuring the Disc Desktop login page, Welcome emails, Mugshot Galleries, expiry periods, Membership-certification and re-certification and, where required, direct-to-police Crime Reporting.

While DAS covers the administration of a customer’s Disc system, the customer itself remains the Data Controller.  So onboarding includes training so the customer, as Data Controller, has a firm understanding of all the relevant aspects of data protection law.

Once onboarding is complete, DAS looks after the on-going management of the Disc system including processing of incident reports, administration of any exclusion scheme, adding relevant current-awareness including news, Alerts, documents and up-coming events, submitting real-time instant messages, handling enquiries or requests for help from users, and much else.

Some tasks remain the responsibility of the customer.  These include managing the membership of their scheme – adding and deleting individual members as appropriate – and adding their own local current-awareness content such as local news and events. DAS doesn’t put ‘boots on the ground’ but it does include direct and frequent liaison with customers’ street-wardens or other relevant local staff.

Customers also remain responsible for primary contact with local partners such as police and council, for local marketing and initial handling of complaints.

The cost of DAS for the first three months is just £200 per month, so customers can discontinue the service if it isn’t right for them. Thereafter the monthly charge is £400.  These charges are in addition to the Disc license.

If you’d like to know more about our Disc Administration Service and receive a copy of the DAS Service Provisions document, contact us on

How Guildford’s BID has driven down low-level business crime – and can prove it

How Guildford’s BID has driven down low-level business crime – and can prove it

As Guildford’s Business Improvement District – ‘Experience  Guildford’ – approaches the end of its second five-year term, Pete Lambert, the Town Safety & Venue Liaison Manager, is confident of re-election, thanks among other things, to the strength of its Business Crime Reduction Partnership.

“We’ve had the BCRP for information-sharing for the best part of 10 years, and we’ve been using the Disc system for much of that time, providing a secure platform to share information on shoplifting and antisocial behaviour.

“But it wasn’t until I took over in 2020 that we actively started pushing our exclusion scheme: collectively barring individuals from member premises. Until then we weren’t getting a huge amount of engagement from our levy-payers. That was largely because few incidents were being investigated by police, especially if they were one-off incidents or if there was no known offender. Naturally, this left retailers wondering if there was any point in reporting low-level crime at all.

Download the full Case Study here (PDF format)

Switching to Disc from another provider? Simple!

Switching to Disc from another provider?  Simple!

Disc is by far the most widely used system of its kind, supporting over 240 organisations managing business crime reduction schemes in over 550 towns and city-centres across the UK.

With years of experience helping customers move to Disc from other providers, we’ve developed a set of tools to migrate data quickly, simply – and without manual processing – into your new Disc system.

Our implementation process comprises six simple steps:

  1. Confirming your Disc implementation: a simple email confirmation will suffice;
  2. Providing your administrator with access to their new Disc system;
  3. For customers new to business crime reduction, advising on setting up a new partnership or scheme, and on compliance with DPA/GDPR;
  4. Setting up your Disc system to precisely suit the way you want your scheme to work;
  5. Advice on adding content – news, alerts, documents and up-coming events, as well as offender data;
  6. Advice on going live: adding members and finally switching on your automated weekly Disc eNewsletter.

If you’re coming to Disc from another provider, Step 5 may include migrating data from your old system to your new Disc system.  Happily our technical tools make this a painless process without the need for manually transferring incident or offender data.

Once everything is ready to migrate, we obtain the data from your previous provider and carry out a quality check to make sure it’s in the right format and that it has been downloaded properly. It’s also a great opportunity to ensure that the data we transfer is up-to-date and holding it still complies with GDPR. So before we migrate your data, we advise you review it to ensure it’s still current and correct, and still held in compliance with GDPR.

Then, we just press a button and, as if by magic, your data uploads into your Disc system. It’s really as simple as that – we take care of everything!

Of course, our support doesn’t stop once you’ve gone live. Our ongoing customer service includes telephone and email support during working hours, pro-active quarterly reviews to ensure you make the most of your Disc system, top-up training sessions for your Disc administrator and, of course, continuous product development and enhancements.

We also hold regional Usergroup meetings across the country to report to you on product developments delivered in the previous 12 months and enhancements due in the next 12 months, and the ‘Open Forum’ section provides an opportunity for you to raise issues of concern, and to make your own suggestions for future Disc enhancements.

Let’s work together to set up your own Business Crime Reduction Scheme

Let’s work together to set up your own Business Crime Reduction Scheme

If you’re thinking about running a Business Crime Reduction Scheme, you may be wondering how easy it is to set up and manage?

Establishing a Business Crime Reduction Scheme is a smart and cost-effective way for your BID to directly address the impact that crime and anti-social behaviour is having on your levy payers. Evidence is clear that BIDs whose members actively share information of incidents and offenders through Disc either stop re-offending outright or arm the police with the evidence they need to prosecute prolific offenders more effectively.

Disc is configurable to suit any scheme, whether retail schemes for daytime economy, night-time schemes for pubs and clubs, or schemes focused on, for example, hotels, charity shops and betting shops.

Once you’ve decided to set up your own scheme, you’ll need consider two important issues:  compliance with Data Protection law (including GDPR), and how to administrate your Disc system.

The GDPR implications of setting up a scheme which shares offenders’ personal data with members might seem daunting. But Disc gives you the reassurance you need by aligning with GDPR’s key concept of ‘data protection by design and default’ with built-in features to help administrators comply with their obligations regarding privacy information for offenders and users alike.

With Disc, you can breathe easy about GDPR:  Disc itself provides the comprehensive technical security you’ll need, use of ‘model documents’ necessary for GDPR compliance, plus tools to ensure the compliance of the levy-payers who’ll use the system.  We’re proud to be GDPR Geeks and will provide all the expert advice you’ll need as issues arise.

Setting up and administrating your new Disc system may seem like a mammoth task, but in fact both are easy – Disc is designed to be extremely easy to use for your levy-payers, and quick to configure and administrate for yourself or your staff. We provide full training through the implementation phase and, with years of experience behind us, we help you every step of the way not only to going ‘live’ but after that, when you’re up and running.

For BIDs new to Business Crime Reduction Schemes it’s critically important to liaise closely with levy-payers and their businesses and to explain and promote what the BID is doing in the run-up to going live, as well as maximising their engagement with the scheme thereafter.  Disc makes that easy too, providing a powerful and compelling communication platform with levy-payers and their businesses, and with key local partners including the police and council.

A recurring concern in any town or city-centre is the low level of reporting of business crime by businesses. They often believe that police give business crime a low priority. Your Disc system will hold a significant amount of information about what’s occurring within your area, and if there are lots of reports of issues that appear not to be being addressed, you’ll be well positioned to justify your levy-payers’ concerns to partner agencies and ensure that local business crime is given the attention it deserves. Disc can also enable levy-payers to report crime online direct to police, as well as to record other types of incidents of concern to your levy payers.

Making sure police are aware of business crime is critically important: under-reporting of crime within a town or city-centre might suggest a year-on-year crime reduction, perhaps resulting in cuts to your local policing team. Disc can demonstrate in such circumstances that, instead of reduced level of criminality, the real issue is a lack of reporting to police.  Ensuring that businesses, police and council share a true picture of what is actually happening is the only way to ensure appropriate policing resources are focused on local business crime and related ASB.

Conversely, where partner agencies are doing a great job, the level of reporting into Disc will demonstrate that fact. It’s important that businesses can see what has been achieved and how they themselves have helped achieve it, and that entering evidence into Disc in the form of Incident Reports assists police in doing their job effectively and achieving positive outcomes for all.

By using Disc you can not only improve the perception and experiences of businesses, customers and visitors to your town or city-centre, but more widely too. So Disc has been designed to enable effective and secure information-sharing between any number of separate Disc systems to maximise effective collaboration between neighbouring areas and wider, across county and policing areas.