Council and Police unite on cyber crime

Release Date: 04 December 2017

Almost 100 professionals who work in public facing roles attended a Cyber Crime Awareness seminar last week (Thursday 1 December) to learn more about how to spot internet crime and spread the word about online safety.

Cyber crime is an ever increasing problem, it is estimated that 1 in 10 people found themselves a victim last year alone. In 2016 around 750,000 fraud and computer misuse crimes were reported to police nationally.

Thursday’s seminar, organised and funded by Richmond Council and the Police, looked to educate those people who work on the front line – sometimes with vulnerable adults or children – about the dangers of this type of online crime, how to prevent it and what to do if someone becomes a victim.

DCI Barry Smith – representing Richmond and Kingston Borough Commander - opened the event, with Police colleagues from Operation Falcon, the Met Police programme of work to stamp out online crime. They were joined by representatives from the Trading Standing Team and the NSPCC. There was also a presentation on the ‘Hackers Perspective’.

Cllr Mark Boyle, Richmond Council Cabinet Member for Community Safety, said:

“It is so important that we help inform and educate people in Richmond upon Thames about the dangers of cyber-crime. All those who work with vulnerable adults or children have a role in ensuring they are safe. That includes understanding what might happen if people have weak or insecure passwords, no security systems on their electronic devices, use insecure wifi networks or are vulnerable to identity theft.

“There are unfortunately a growing number of people who prey on vulnerable adults and children online. All it takes is a few small changes to our online behaviour in order to protect ourselves and stop scammers catching us out.”

Organising the Conference, DS Andy Jackson, said:

“Cyber Crime is an increasing area of business for the police and is now endemic in all areas of society. At a time of reduced resources across the public sector it is vital that we work in partnership to prevent people falling victim to these types of crime; particularly those who are targeted because of their vulnerabilities.

I would like to thank all those who attended and would encourage us all to spread the message of prevention to raise awareness.”

Notes for editors

If you are a journalist and would like further information about this press release, contact Elinor Firth on 020 8487 5159. 

Reference: P560/17

Updated: 15 December 2017