PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Following mass shootings over recent months, police investigations have uncovered concerning online activity by the suspects. Authorities are now reminding the community to say something if they see something.

Price McCarty, a supervisory special agent with the FBI’s Springfield Field Office, said online threats can come in multiple forms. This includes written posts, videos, or pictures.

He said if you believe an act of violence is imminent and have a sense of a target, area, or city, call 911 immediately. He added that there could also be possible red flags that can be a little more subtle.

Mccarty said when the FBI receives tips about suspicious online posts, they’re not taken lightly.

“The FBI works very diligently to find out where that threat might occur, where the concerning post might occur, where the potential target might be located and they’ll push that information out to multiple FBI field offices at the same time,” McCarty said. “We are definitely dependent upon the information that comes from the public about their concerns, what they’re seeing, about what they’re hearing,” he added.

Locally, Captain Chris Watkins with the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office said the department has a special detective position that focuses on cybercrime, ranging from online threats to online fraud.

Watkins said there are a lot of social media platforms that teens and young adults use that authorities are trying to keep up with. Most recently, some newer apps of focus include Discord and Yubo.

Watkins added that police can’t see everything, and that’s why it’s important for the community to report concerning online activity as well.

“What we’re seeing is some of these young adults see some type of threat, but they know the person and they’re like oh that’s Johnny, he’s not doing anything,” Watkins said. “You have to take those seriously. Don’t blow it off. If you think it’s concerning, let us know and we’ll investigate it,” he added.

The Peoria County Sheriff’s Office does risk assessments of threats or concerning behavior they’re alerted to. Watkins said sometimes this leads to people receiving counseling or medical help.

“A lot of times this isn’t related to crime. It’s just someone going through a rough time, depression. There’s just a lot of mental health issues out there right now. It’s hard to decipher through all these but we have a system down and we take everyone seriously” Watkins said.

You can submit tips to the FBI by clicking here.