The issue with conventional crime has remained as one of the most dominant topics in Bulgarian society in the past 30 years. In the late 1990s, along with the phenomenon of “power crime groups” — the Bulgarian version of organized crime, the huge number of daily criminal incidents created a feeling of insecurity and fear among Bulgarian citizens. As a result, there is a tendency in society for extremely strong distrust in the information received from the institutions, especially in the data on the criminal situation in the country.
In this context, in 2001 the Center for the Study of Democracy developed and proposed the country’s first alternative crime assessment tool, the National Crime Survey (NCS). The NCS is a tool that allows for an in-depth analysis of trends and extend of crime in Bulgaria. Each year, the NCS collects information through a nationally representative sociological survey — “victimization survey”, or a survey of victims of crime. This method provides reliable information on the crimes being reported and registered by the police authorities, as well as and the ones not reported by the victims.
The current report presents an analysis on the results from the National Crime Survey conducted in the first half of 2020 and puts forward recommendations for increasing the efficiency of the institutions in registering crimes reported by victims.