Ontario Taking Steps to Prevent Auto Theft in Durham Region

Automated license plate recognition technology will help fight crime and enhance
public safety

November 29, 2022

DURHAM — The Ontario government is providing Durham Regional Police
Service with $2,508,484.00 to help fight crime, including auto theft.
The Durham Regional Police Service will use the funding for Automated Licence
Plate Recognition (ALPR) technology – a system that consists of cameras that
automatically scan licence plates. The system is installed in or on active-duty
police cruisers and alerts officers to stolen or expired plates, or plates registered
to suspended drivers. The system can also notify officers of missing and wanted
persons and vehicles associated with AMBER alerts.

“Police officers in the Region of Durham will be able use this new technology to
locate missing persons, stolen vehicles, and identify and arrest suspects more
quickly,” said Lorne Coe, MPP for Whitby, and Parliamentary Assistant to the
Premier. “The data is provided in real-time which will enable officers to make the
best decisions based on the situation.”

“Police in Durham Region need access to all the tools they can get to combat
crime – especially auto theft, which has become all too frequent in our
neighbourhoods,” said Peter Bethlenfalvy, MPP for Pickering Uxbridge. “The use
of Automated Licence Plate Recognition (ALPR) will be a major step toward
making our communities safer and our property more secure.”

“Providing resources and investments in technology that will improve public
safety in Durham and across Ontario is a priority for our government” said Todd
McCarthy, MPP for Durham. “This new ALPR technology will provide our frontline police services with the technology to track vehicles of interest and react quicker to situations – such as amber alerts – where public safety is paramount.”

“This funding will help improve the work efficiency of our DRPS officers, especially in an environment where we have seen a great increase in stolen vehicles across the region”, said Patrice Barnes, MPP for Ajax “This system can read thousands of licence plates per minute allowing our officers to process more
information, making the process more efficient.”

The Automated Licence Plate Recognition Technology Grant is a one-time grant
to help police services strengthen roadside law enforcement efforts and improve
public safety across the province.

“This investment further demonstrates our government’s plan to ensure police
services across Ontario have the resources and equipment they need to keep
our communities safe,” said Solicitor General Michael Kerzner. “I am confident
that this tool will be a tremendous asset to police services and help them combat
incidents of auto theft and enhance public safety.”


• ALPR technology is a system of cameras and supporting software that
captures licence plate information and immediately compares plate
numbers to a Ministry of Transportation (MTO) database with vehicle and
vehicle owner information. It also has the capability of capturing vehicles
of interest (e.g., amber alerts, stolen vehicles, suspended driver(s), etc.).
• ALPR technology does not detect moving violations such as speeding,
going through a red light or stop sign, and distracted driving.
• The investment in ALPR technology supports Ontario’s recent move to
eliminate licence plate renewal fees and stickers for passenger vehicles,
light-duty trucks, motorcycles and mopeds by allowing licence plate
information to be read automatically without requiring an officer to see a
physical licence sticker to validate a vehicle.