2.5 Real Estate and Auto Data

2.5 Real Estate and Auto Data

DataQuick sells real estate-related information, which it captures directly from county assessors and recorder offices. The company also captures and makes available detailed information about property owners. Sales and loan information is entered within 72 to 96 hours of receipt. DataQuick coverage spans real estate information on 800 jurisdictions in 47 states and nearly every metropolitan area. Table 2.3 lists the type of information they provide.

Table 2.3: Type of Information Provided by Data Quick

Structure age/year

Dwelling unit size

Property type

Home size range Πsq. ft.

Lot size range Πsq. ft.

Insurance X-date

Presence of pool

Year built


Length of residence

Dwelling size œ single/multi

Purchase date of home

Year home was purchased

Month home was purchased

Minority census tract

CRA income classification

For auto-related information, Polk is the best source in the industry, while Experian, Equifax, and Trans Union, the three major credit report companies, also provide demographics as part of their services. All of the companies that provide these types of demographics offer different options for purchasing the data—by tape, CD, dedicated line, or the Web.

2.6 Credit Data

Access to credit information in the United States is regulated by the Fair Credit Act. These reports are matched most commonly by Social Security numbers or a combination of addresses and are broken down into these main sections.

  1. The identification section contains the individual name, date of birth, current and previous addresses, and employer information, when available. This section of a credit report is available to anyone because it does not contain any credit information, and each of the three national bureaus bundle and sell these "short" reports for such applications as skip-tracing.

  2. The grantor section contains information on account balances and monthly payment amounts. For every grantor listed in the report, there is also detailed information regarding the credit payment history for at least one year. A credit report will also display all inquiries that have been made by grantors; generally, the more inquiries, the higher the credit risk assigned to an individual.

  3. The last section of a credit report contains detailed information for contacting all of the grantors listed in an individual's report. Investigators attempting to locate an individual or his or her assets can use this third-party contact information.

2.7 Criminal Data

Criminal records and statistics are also available through various sources. For example, aggregated crime data is available for analysis to develop a picture of potential criminal activity, risk, and security for a particular location. This type of crime data includes calls for service (CFS) consisting of every report of crime, suspected crime, and activity called into the police via the 911 emergency system and other channels. CFS includes incidents reported, along with the location, date, and time the event was reported.

The CFS data is generally quite useful, especially for security situations involving preventive measures against property crimes. The CFS data allows for temporal and spatial analyses of trends and patterns in crime activity, enabling countermeasures to be developed. CFS data can be used in conjunction with local law enforcement agency offense or incident reports, as well as the FBI's Uniform Crime Report (UCR) codification system.

CFS data and offense or incident reports can be mined in order to forecast criminal activity and for the clustering of unsolved crimes. This will be covered in depth in Chapter 12. Other aggregated crime data includes the FBI's National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) which will expand the (UCR) data available on the following eight primary crimes:


  1. Murder

  2. Rape

  3. Robbery

  4. Aggravated assault


  1. Burglary

  2. Larceny theft

  3. Motor vehicle theft

  4. Arson

Another criminal data set is that of the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), containing the characteristics of crime victims, including their age, sex, race, ethnicity, marital status, household income, years at their residence, and relationship to the offender. NCVS data is compiled via surveys of approximately 60,000 U.S. households. The NCVS, like the CFS, can be used for analysis of patterns and crime risk assessment, which, in this case, is crime against individuals rather than property. NIBRS is also being developed for collecting data on crimes focusing on 22 offense categories:

  1. Arson

  2. Assault offenses: (aggravated assault, simple assault, intimidation)

  3. Bribery

  4. Burglary/breaking and entering

  5. Counterfeiting/forgery

  6. Destruction/damage/vandalism of property

  7. Drug/narcotic offenses: drug/narcotic violations, drug equipment violations

  8. Embezzlement

  9. Extortion/blackmail

  10. Fraud offenses: false pretenses/swindle/confidence game, credit card/automatic teller machine fraud, impersonation, welfare fraud, wire fraud

  11. Gambling offenses: betting/wagering, operating/promoting/assisting gambling, gambling equipment violations, sports tampering

  12. Homicide offenses: murder and non-negligent manslaughter, negligent manslaughter, justifiable homicide

  13. Kidnapping/abduction

  14. Larceny/theft offenses: pocket-picking, purse-snatching, shoplifting, theft from building, theft from coin-operated machine or device, theft from motor vehicle, theft of motor vehicle parts or accessories, all other larceny

  15. Motor vehicle theft

  16. Pornography/obscene material

  17. Prostitution offenses: prostitution, assisting or promoting prostitution

  18. Robbery

  19. Sex offenses, forcible: forcible rape, forcible sodomy, sexual assault with an object, forcible fondling

  20. Sex offenses, non-forcible: incest, statutory rape

  21. Stolen property offenses (receiving, etc.)

  22. Weapon law violations

Aggregate crime statistics exist at the following levels: national, state, metropolitan statistical area (MSA) consisting of the core cities with over 50,000 people, city and county, beat, district or precinct, crime statistical reporting area, census tract, and individual property. There are also security reports (SR) maintained by private industry for all major buildings, which contain detailed information on crime for their premises with usually the following data:

  • Incident reported

  • Date of incident

  • Time of incident

  • Location of incident

  • Victim(s), if any

  • Witness(es), if any

  • Modus operandi (MO)

  • Follow-up investigation

  • Outcome

Some of these statistics are available from the Department of Justice site at

  • http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/cmrc/weblinks/welcome.html

Other criminal databases and networks include the following:

  • National Law Enforcement Telecommunications Systems (NLETS): NLETS is a nationwide network that links all states and many federal agencies together for the exchange of a criminal justice information. In each state, an interface agency is responsible for maintaining an instate law enforcement telecommunication systems that delivers messages throughout the state. Through those connections, any criminal justice agency on a state law enforcement telecommunications systems in one state can communicate with any criminal justice agency on a law enforcement telecommunications system in any other state. This includes all major police agencies and most smaller ones. In addition, many prosecutors, probation departments, parole offices, and the like communicate with each other and with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies through these systems.

    Information Available from Other States Via NLETS

    • Vehicle registration information

    • Drivers license information

    • Criminal history records

    • Boat and snowmobile registration [1]

    • Parole and probation information [2]

    • Corrections information [3]

    • Sex offender registration information [4]

    National Files Available to NLETS Users

    • ATF gun tracking data

    • FAA tracking information

    • FAA aircraft registration data

    • National impounded vehicle file

    • National drug pointer index

    • Hazardous material information

    • INS's law enforcement support center

    Data Available From Canada Through NLETS

    • Wanted persons

    • Stolen and registered vehicles

    • Drivers license files

    • Stolen articles files

    • Stolen guns files

    • Stolen securities files

    • Stolen boats files

    • Criminal history records

  • National Crime Information Center (NCIC): Another source of criminal data for each state law enforcement telecommunications system is the FBI's Network. The system has been in operation since its inception in 1967. Its current, enhanced version, NCIC 2000, came online in July 1999. NCIC is a national index of theft reports, warrants, and other criminal justice information submitted by law enforcement agencies across the country. It provides real-time information regarding persons and property to police officers by the side of the road, case investigators, booking personnel, prosecutors, probation and parole officers, and others. Through NCIC, almost all police departments in the country share their theft reports, warrants, missing-person reports, and the like with each other in an online, real-time mode. At present, users generate more than 2,000,000 transactions per day.

    Information Regarding Property Available from NCIC

    • Stolen vehicles

    • Vehicles used in felonies

    • Stolen license plates

    • Stolen boats

    • Stolen articles

    • Stolen securities

    • Stolen guns

    • Recovered guns

    Information Regarding Persons Available from NCIC

    • Wanted person reports (warrants)

    • Foreign fugitive reports

    • Missing-person reports

    • Protective order data

    • Persons of possible danger to secret services protectees

    • Sex offenders registration data

    • Persons on supervised release

    • Violent gang and terrorist organization (and members) data

The NCIC Network also provides inquiry access to the FBI's Interstate Identification Index (III). The III index points to the criminal history record residing either in the FBI or the particular state's holding information. It utilizes the telecommunications systems of the FBI, the individual states, and NLETS to respond to requests for criminal history information. This decentralized system promotes the use of state records, which are more complete, and reduces the FBI workload in maintaining and disseminating the records.

The FBI's Criminal Justice Information Services Wide Area Network (CJIS WAN) connects the states to the FBI's Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification Systems (IAFIS). This WAN has a connection in each state, which allows for the electronic submission of arrest fingerprints to the FBI from the state criminal history repository. That submission causes the creation of a criminal history record in III. The CJIS WAN also provides for the electronic submission of latent fingerprints for the investigation of crimes and for submission of the fingerprints of noncriminal justice applicants for national background searches.

With IAFIS, those states that have built, or are building, in-state AFIS systems capable of accepting electronic submission of fingerprints from local arresting agencies will be able to forward those electronic fingerprints to the FBI and receive a response as to that person's national identification and criminal history within two hours. Plans for the CJIS WAN call for expanding its use to include non-CJIS services. The first major addition is to use the WAN for the delivery of certain FBI laboratory services, such as the DNA information shared among the states and FBI. Long-terms plan call for the NCIC 2000 Network and the CJIS WAN to be consolidated into a single network.

Other systems and telecommunications networks providing criminal-related data include the following:

  • CODIS: the Combined DNA Index System, a national index of DNA profiles limited to convicted offenders and crime-scene evidence

  • NIBIN: the National Integrated Ballistics Information Network, an attempt to unify BATF and FBI firearms databases

  • NDPIX: the National Drug Pointer Index, a pointer system that allows state, local, and federal agencies to determine if a suspect is under investigation by any other participating agency

  • UCR/NIBRS: the National Uniform Crime Reporting System, a statistical system based on crime reporting by state and local police agencies not intended to include personally identifying information

  • NICS: the National Instant Criminal Background Check System for presale firearm background searches by licensed firearms dealers

  • LEO: the Law Enforcement On-Line, a public safety intranet for research and training

Other federal criminal data systems that support the justice activities of one or more agencies at the federal level only include the following:

  • TECS: the Treasury Enforcement Communications Systems

  • DRUGX: a common FBI/DEA drug intelligence database intended to allow coordination of investigative activities for both federal agencies

  • JABS: the Joint Automated Booking System, a federal booking capability that enables federal agencies to share arrest data and provides linkage between the booking systems of federal law enforcement agencies and the FBI's IAFIS

  • NIPC: the National Infrastructure Protection Center database

  • IDENT-INS: two print AFIS capability for searching aliens entering the country

  • FinCEN: the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network

There are also multistate networked databases containing additional criminal data, such as:

  • RISS: the Regional Information Sharing System

  • WIN: the Western Identification Network, an AFIS consortium of western states

  • SWBS ADIS: the Southwest Border States Anti-Drug Information System

  • GREAT: the Gang Reporting, Evaluation, and Tracking system, an investigative database of suspected gang members maintained by the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department, accessible to agencies nationwide

Aside from criminal statistics, there are of course individual criminal records, some of which are available on the Web, at such sites as criminalfiles.info, which provides instant searches from its databases of criminal records covering the most populous U.S. states and some U.S. counties. This site maintains databases containing felony, and misdemeanor dispositions and traffic violations. In general, search results from these databases show name, date of birth, race, sex, offense, disposition, date of disposition, county, and case number. The site charges a $10-per-search fee. Figure 2.1 provides a sample of a record extract.

start figure

                      Nevada criminal search

        2 charges for Nevada criminal detail records found


Birth MM/YYYY:   02/23/1963       Release Date:

Sentence Date    11/8/1994        County Name:

Offense :        SEXUAL ASSAULT   Statute:         114

Sentence:                         Cause Number:    989561

Disp Date:                        Disposition:

File Date:                        Fine Amount:


Birth MM/YYYY:   02/23/1963       Release Date:

Sentence Date    11/8/1994        County Name:     N/a

Offense :        SEXUAL ASSAULT   Statute:         114

Sentence:        N/A              Cause Number:    976251

Disp Date:                        Disposition:     N/A

File Date:                        Fine Amount:

end figure

Figure 2.1: Sample record extract (criminal record detail).

Table 2.4: Criminalfiles.info available jurisdictions.







Florida-Duval County

Florida-Pinellas County

Florida-Dade County

Florida-Hillsborough County

Florida-Palm Beach County




Illinois-Cook County







New Jersey

New York State

New York City

North Carolina





South Carolina


Tennessee-Shelby County


Texas-Dallas County


Washington State

Appendix A contains additional websites with criminal data.

[1]Information not available from all states

[2]Information not available from all states

[3]Information not available from all states

[4]Information not available from all states