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At the mercy of cybercriminals

Joe Hancock

The National Audit Office (NAO) has reported that not enough is being done to tackle cybercrime, following another large scale malware incident this week. Article from Cyber Security Lead Joe Hancock – Mishcon de Reya.

This is a continuation of a trend that has being growing for several years: as everyday life gets more digital, so does crime. In fact, most cybercrime is old crime using new methods: ransomware is extortion in the digital age. Law Enforcement is under-resourced and lacks the front line capability to deal with both traditional crime and cybercrime simultaneously – each gives rise to very different demands.

To tackle cybercrime, cross border collaboration and information sharing is necessary – the perpetrators are often not located in the same country as the victim. Law enforcement therefore has to share more information more quickly. The private sector also needs to pick up the burden through partnerships with public sector colleagues.

We are noticing more and more clients coming to us because of a need to understand cybercrime and the associated risks to business – almost every fraud has a digital component nowadays. The NAO reports that cybercrime represents just 16 percent of all crime – this percentage looks very low. It’s possible that cybercrime is being under reported or tracked by the authorities as a different type of issue e.g. fraud rather than cyber fraud.

This is not an issue that will be solved overnight. A large part of the solution requires societal change – most people know how to protect themselves against physical theft or robbery – now we need to encourage the same level of awareness of crimes in the cyber world.

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