Starting today, an electronic billboard in New York City's Times Square will feature fugitives wanted by the FBI. The FBI credits Clear Channel Outdoor, an ad company providing the billboard as public service. The faces of three fugitives wanted in the New York area were flashed on a “Today” show segment this morning.
The digital billboard initiative began in 2007, when Clear Channel approached the FBI with the idea of using its billboards to help catch criminals, rescue kidnap victims, and provide high-priority security messages. Digital billboards can be posted electronically at a moment's notice–often right after a crime is committed. The national initiative was launched with 100 billboards in 23 cities. With three more organizations have joined the partnership, the FBI has access to more than 1,500 billboards in more than 40 states. The FBI says that at least 30 cases have been solved as a result of digital billboard publicity.