Facewatch, the online crime reporting platform, has successfully raised its targeted £500,000 on Crowdcube, the investment crowdfunding platform.

Much of the money was donated by “ordinary members of the public” who shared Facewatch’s aim of tackling “the scourge of low level crime,” founder and chairman Simon Gordon said.

The new capital will help speed up its roll-out across the UK market and Facewatch platform development including the launch of a new Communicator app.

The app will enable member retailers to communicate within groups securely from their mobiles including Text, Video, Audio, geolocated Alerts and SOS notifications.

A Facewatch Mobile app, which will allow users of the Facewatch Platform to report incidents, ban individuals and view their watch lists on smartphones, will follow soon after.

Retailers who use Facewatch can capture security-related incidents and accompanying CCTV imagery, analyse the data in order to target harden their premises against crime, share watch lists with other businesses and report incidents through Facewatch to the Police as ‘digital evidence packages.’

Use of the platform can also help to save police time, the company said. It estimates that that for every crime reported via Facewatch, with CCTV attached or included, a minimum of four hours of police time is saved. In monetary terms this equates to around £110 per case.

Facewatch CEO Richard Thompson, added: “The Southern Cooperative analysed the information it had captured using the Facewatch Platform and then reduced crime in two of its stores by 90% and 83% respectively.

“In fact they are so impressed with the benefits of using the system that they have recently announced that they will be using Facewatch as part of a joint initiative with Sussex Police to tackle retail crime in the county.”