Sussex Police are planning a new service that will allow shotgun certificates and firearms licenses to be renewed through an application for Apple’s iPhone and iPad devices.
The application is part of a suite that will allow members of the public access to news, appeals and other services related to the force at the swipe of a finger.
The force has revealed that the proposals come as part of a £3,000,000 cost-cutting drive.
However, the scheme has not met with universal approval, with gun control campaigners claiming the proposals would put lives at risk.
Gill Marshall-Andrews of the Gun Control Network said: “This is an extraordinarily silly idea.
“We have to look at how shootings can be avoided, release the secrecy behind who has licences and increase the amount of checks.
“Allowing people just to renew their licence by mobile phone increases the risk that the person with the firearms licence will misuse it at some point”
Clairfying the proposals, a police spokesman said: “If this model was adopted it would not replace officers visiting the applicant, it would just allow the applicant to submit their initial application online.”
Kian de Loach, Sussex Police’s head of multimedia and e-services, said: “We are looking at how we can enable people to renew firearms licences on their mobile phone because at the moment it is a very labour intensive process.
“Currently you must arrange a meeting and sit down with someone and fill out the paperwork.
“A mobile phone application lets you do it any time during the day or night without even having to ring anyone or have a conversation.
“It is about looking at ways that enable the public to do this as simply as possible and we have a lot of other potential uses for mobile phone apps to achieve this.”
Digital media heads from police forces across England and Wales will discuss the proposals at the force’s social media conference in Brighton on June 25.