Africa has enjoyed increasing stability and rising economic growth in recent decades, but this has also facilitated cross-border criminal activity across the continent.
To combat the rise of organized crime in Africa, INTERPOL is part of Project ENACT, a three-year project (2017-2019) which works to mitigate the impact of transnational organized crime on development, governance, security and the rule of law in Africa.
The project seeks to build a comprehensive knowledge base on the role of organized crime in Africa based on monitoring and evidence-based analysis to inform policy decisions, and to boost the skills and capacity of key African stakeholders to better respond to transnational crime threats.
INTERPOL’s role in the project is to assist police in Africa to adopt proactive strategies to combat organized crime threats, facilitate information exchange and improve their investigative skills, through:
- Criminal analysis training;
- Extending access to our I-24/7 secure global police communications system in selected countries;
- Providing equipment, analytical software, training and mentoring to targeted countries;
- Placing a criminal intelligence analyst at each of our four Regional Bureaus in Africa;
- Creating a secure analysis platform;
- Bringing together heads of analytical units across Africa.
ENACT is funded by the European Union and implemented by INTERPOL and the Institute for Security Studies, in partnership with the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime.
At INTERPOL, we have developed a criminal intelligence analysis training programme for law enforcement officers across Africa, designed to build their investigative capacity. Training provides junior intelligence analysts and field investigators with the skills to analyze large amounts of data from a variety of sources and turn it into accurate, actionable intelligence.
Classroom sessions are combined with practical exercises and simulations allowing participants to apply their new skills to real-life situations.
Several courses include a ‘train-the-trainer’ aspect aimed at police academy instructors, so they can integrate criminal analysis training into their national police training curricula.
Topics discussed include the intelligence cycle, offender group analysis, case/comparative case analysis, financial analysis, analysis of telephone communications and more.
We are extending access to our I-24/7 secure police communications system to specialized agencies and frontline officers who need quick and direct access to INTERPOL information. This allows them to access our criminal databases and share critical crime-related information with their counterparts.
Through ENACT, we extended access to I-24/7 to four national analytical units which opened in Congo, Malawi, Niger and Uganda during 2018-2019. These units are responsible for intelligence collection and analysis within their national police. We provide technical equipment to these four units as well as analytical software, training and mentoring.
To provide dedicated support across the continent, experienced criminal intelligence analysts are stationed at three of our Regional bureaus in Africa (Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire and Kenya), in addition to one based in Lyon to support North African countries.
The regional analysts develop strategic analytical reports on current and emerging organized crime threats and share them with national police chiefs, including during the annual meetings of the regional chiefs of police organizations – EAPCCO, WAPCCO, SARPCCO, CAPCCO.
Additionally, the analysts work directly with the countries in their regions to provide support and mentoring on data collection and criminal analysis procedures.
INTERPOL’s Activities - Project ENACT 2017-2020
- 18 regional training courses in criminal intelligence analysis were organized, as per the original objectives of the project, plus 3 additional national courses requested by countries. A total of 415 officers from 52 African countries participated.
- 5 training courses combining criminal intelligence analysis and the INTERPOL Instructor Development Course/IDC were organized. All African countries were invited to participate. A total of 59 officers from 35 African countries are now “INTERPOL certified instructors”. They can now teach analysis in a very structured way at national level in police academies.
- An awareness seminar on criminal intelligence analysis was organized in July 2019 for the Directors of CID from Congo, Malawi, Niger and Uganda where ENACT-INTERPOL opened an analytical unit. The purpose of this seminar was to focus on the importance of criminal intelligence analysis when tackling crime at national level.
- An analytical workshop in July 2019 brought together the 22 analysts from the four newly created criminal intelligence analysis units to exchange and share experiences. Each unit presented their results and got the opportunity to work on a brochure to promote their unit at national level.
2 conferences were organized by ENACT-INTERPOL in 2018, entitled “Understanding and Countering Organized Crime in Africa with Criminal Intelligence Analysis”. 136 senior officers from 47 African countries attended. It gave the national Heads of Analysis the opportunity to gather better quality information and intelligence, and to share new developments in their field.
- The “Overview of Serious and Organized Crime in Africa” analytical report was published in 2018 and was complemented by five regional reports: Central Africa, Eastern Africa, Northern Africa, Southern Africa and Western Africa.
These reports draw an overview of the major aspects of organized crime both in terms of which groups are active throughout the continent and the types of illegal enterprise in which they are engaged. They provide law enforcement and decision makers with an understanding of how organized crime operates locally and transnationally so they can form effective law enforcement strategies.
- 1 analytical report on “corruption as a facilitator for organized crime in Eastern Africa” was completed upon request from the Chiefs of police in 2019.
Project ENACT-INTERPOL undertook this assessment to provide Eastern African countries with strategic intelligence on the ways that corruption facilitates organized crime, and facilitate law enforcement cooperation among the most affected countries. It identifes the factors that enable the use of corruption by certain organized crime groups within the public and private sectors.
As part of its 2020 activities, ENACT-INTERPOL has just completed two additional reports and will soon be publishing a third one:
- Mobile money and organized crime in Africa.
Transferring money via mobile phone is widely used in Africa. This allows individuals to transfer funds, pay bills and/or purchase goods. This new method of payment is very difficult to control by law enforcement and therefore presents a good opportunity for criminals to remain undetected during their financial transactions.
- Online African organized crime from surface to dark web.
Crime has moved online. Criminals have access to sophisticated cyber tools and new opportunities for crime are open and available. Trafficking activities are increasingly moved to the dark web.
- Illicit goods trafficking via ports and airports facilities in Africa.
The objective is to identify the main seaports and airports facilitating illegal goods transport.
All the public versions of the reports can be found at the bottom of this page and downloaded. The reports are published in English and some of them can also be found in French and Arabic.