POLICE officers and civilians working for North Yorkshire Police have been disciplined or told to resign because of their conduct on social media.
Forty-six investigations have been carried out by the force in the past five years after staff were found to be using networks such as Facebook and Twitter inappropriately.
Two members of staff from the force resigned after their conduct fell below what was expected of them, and a further ten either received a written warning or advice from their manager following an investigation.
Information gathered from forces across the country found officers and those working in civilian posts have made racist and threatening comments online, sent friend requests to victims of crime and uploaded images of colleagues in “compromising positions”.
A total of 828 cases were reported to police bosses, ranging from social media gaffes to sackable offences which threatened to bring forces into disrepute.
Deputy Chief Constable Tim Madgwick, said: “The high number of investigations into reported breaches of the force’s social media policy reflects how seriously we take the integrity of our staff.
“Each report is thoroughly investigated by our Professional Standards Department. If a staff member is found to have breached the standards expected of them they can expect to be dealt with appropriately.
“In the period covered by the Freedom of Information request, two employees were required to resign, with a further 10 receiving disciplinary action in the form of management advice or written warnings.
“The remainder were given suitable advice about ensuring that their personal conduct meets the highest standards expected of them.”
About a seventh (14%) of all investigations resulted in no further action or the personnel having no case to answer.
This compared with around a tenth of cases (9%) ending in a resignation, dismissal or retirement.
DCC Madgwick added: “I would like to reassure the public that all police officers and police staff are committed to the national Code of Ethics, which provides clear guidance on the use of social media and networking sites.”