Michigan nonprofit looks to implement cybercrime hotline.
Michigan nonprofit looks to implement cybercrime hotline.

A Michigan non-profit is working with federal, state, and local law enforcement to add services to the already established 211  system to serve victims of cybercrimes.

The Cybercrime Support Network (CSN) is launching a pilot program in western Michigan to train 911 and 211 front-line specialists to triage cybercrime calls, after which the local community will be trained to call 211 in the event of a cybercrime, according to a Nov. 7 press release.

The goals of the program include building awareness, identifying community resources for recovery and crime victim compensation, improving victim education and restitution, serving cybercrime victims and connecting them to law enforcement.

The organization is already working with United Way Worldwide National 211 director to ensure the initiative can go national when ready, CSN Chief Executive Officer and President Kristin Judge told SC Media. The organization is still looking to gain the financial backing to train 911 and 211 front-line staff and hire additional 211 operators in order to expand the initiative. 

“The 211 referral specialists, who already serve 90 percent of Americans, will answer the calls and take the victim through a decision tree to determine who they need to contact,” Judge said. “We are working with law enforcement, private sector and consumer protection organizations to determine the best place to send them.”

By 2021 CSN looks to normalize citizens calling 211 for cybercrime assistance as commonplace as calling 911 in an emergency with confidence that they will receive informed, compassionate and expert support in seeking recovery.