Istanbul Travel Guide

Security in Istanbul

  • You can dial 155 and call the police

  • Crime rates have been lowered thanks to Mobese

  • Traffic Camera of Istanbul

  • In Sultanahmet there is a special police-unit for tourists, who also speaks English

Istanbul is Europe’s third and world’s 21st biggest city.  Despite its population of more than 12 million people as well as the mass of visitors coming from various different countries, the city is enlisted among the safest cities in the world despite its highly dense population.

According to the available data, one of every 66 people in Istanbul is involved in a crime. This is compared to one of 14 people in Budapest, one of seven people in Vienna, one of eight people in Luxembourg, one of 34 people in Sofia, and one of six people in Berlin. The research conducted by the EU Crime and Security Consortium, exposes however that 18% of people in Istanbul become victoms of a crime as compared to 32% in London, 27% in Amsterdam, 26% in Belfast and Dublin, 24% in Copenhagen, 23% in New York and Stockholm, 20% in Brussels, 19% in Rome. While total public crimes were recored as 148,165 in 2005 in Istanbul, there were 262,176 in Berlin, 1,015,121 in London, and 200,177 in Paris.

Crime rates in Istanbul, however, have been considerably lowered during the past three years as the result of successful operations by law enforcement units and by the use of MOBESE (acronym for Integrated Mobile Electronic System of CCTV).

Twelve different systems, including 952 quarters, 3,500 police vehicles, 150 mobile police station units, the foundation of Province and District Command Centers, and City Security Directorate, were integrated with MOBESE. Starting with the emergency services, the other institutions are planned to be integrated into the system as necessary.

What to do?

  • Don’t bring lots of money along. It is better to use a creditcard, instead of cash money. Because pickpockets may be attracted, in tourist areas especially
  • When there is an inconvenient situation, you can dial 155 and call the police.
  • In Sultanahmet there is a special police-unit for tourists, who also speaks English. The police are walking through the area to check out the neighbourhood. Their phone number is: 0212527450