The Tip411 service allows the public, with the assurance of complete anonymity, to provide tips to DEA through two different means ? by text message and on a website.
To use the text message service, a citizen tipster sends a text message to the nationally assigned text message short name of ?847411? or ?tip411?. In sending the message, the tipster also enters a certain keyword chosen by DEA, which causes the message to be delivered to an inbox accessible only by designated DEA personnel.
In route to the DEA inbox, the Tip411 system removes the tipster?s telephone number from the message and the tipster is assigned a randomly selected identification code. Accordingly, the Tip411 system provides the tipster anonymity by not allowing DEA to identify the phone from which the tip originates.
At the same time that the text message tip is sent to the DEA inbox, the El Paso Field Division duty agent is alerted by email or text that a tip has been received. The duty agent then may engage in dialogue with the tipster by replying to the tipster?s text and asking follow-up questions, if necessary.
Again, the identity of the tipster remains protected because the duty agent only has access to the tipster?s randomly assigned identifier. To ensure follow-up on tips received, duty agent alerts will be reviewed weekly by group supervisors.
If a tipster wishes to cease dialogue with the duty agent, the tipster may send a text message to ?tip411? and type in the keyword ?stop.? This option, which is familiar to texters, is provided to the tipster in an auto-reply message he or she receives after successfully sending the initial tip message.