Upwards of 50% of calls delivered to front-line Police officers are said to have originated from complaints relating to social media.
“As people have moved their shopping online and their communications online, they’ve also moved their insults, their abuse and their threats online,” Marshall claimed on the BBC Radio 4 programme Law in Action.
“I see that it won’t be long before pretty much every investigation that the Police conduct will have an online element to it,” he added.
The Chief Constable explained around 6000 officers are now being trained to deal with online offences because both the Police and the public are still trying to understand when online insults become a crime.
Marshall claims that the problem is particularly trying for officers who deal with low-level crime and those on the front line of Policing who “deal with this every day.”
“In a typical day where perhaps they deal with a dozen calls, they might expect that at least half of them, whether around antisocial behaviour or abuse or threats of assault may well relate to social media, Facebook, Twitter or other forms,” he said.
For Marshall, Police training, public education and enforcement by the social media companies themselves is needed to tackle the problem.
Online crimes are currently recorded as traditional issues, rather than the umbrella term of cyber-crime, making it difficult to deliver figures that support the idea that over half of Police calls originate from the Internet.
The College of Policing is currently researching a way of presenting the facts of crime originating from social media and expects to present the results within a few months.