Gun crime in parts of England and Wales has increased more than five fold over the past decade, the Tories have said.
They released figures showing that, in nearly half of all forces, offences involving dangerous firearms had doubled or worse since 1998.
The statistics showed Lancashire Constabulary had seen the biggest single rise, with the number of offences increasing by 600%.
But the Home Office said the claims were "misleading" because of changes in recording practices.
The figures, released to the Conservatives in parliamentary answers, show a full breakdown of gun crime by police force and region.
They come after it was revealed the Metropolitan Police was deploying armed officers after a surge in gang violence.
Shadow home secretary Chris Grayling said: "These figures are all the more alarming given that it is only a week since the Metropolitan Police said it was increasing regular armed patrols in some areas of the capital.
"In areas dominated by gang culture, we're now seeing guns used to settle scores between rivals as well as turf wars between rival drug dealers. We need to redouble our efforts to deal with the challenge."
The statistics showed every single region of England and Wales had experienced an increase in gun crime between 1998/9 and 2007/8.
Only four force areas experienced a fall in gun crime over the same period - Cleveland, Humberside, Cambridgeshire and Sussex. There were 9,865 offences recorded in 2007/8, up from 5,209 in 1998/9.