The head of the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau has praised police in Warwickshire and West Mercia for being alert to the growing threat of cyber crime.
Superintendent Pete Oâ€™Doherty said he was delighted the two police forces were staging a major cyber crime conference and workshop to increase public awareness and to develop partnership working to tackle internet fraudsters.
The day-long conference is being hosted by Coventry University on Friday (23rdÂ May) and sponsored by Warwickshireâ€™s Police and Crime Commissioner Ron Ball.Â He will open the event to a range of invited guests interested in cyber crime issues, including educators, businesses, the police and public bodies.
Supt.Oâ€™Doherty said: â€œThis is the kind of initiative which in the long run will help us win the battle against cyber criminals.
â€œFrom what I see day in day out, cyber crime is rapidly increasing, both in volume and in complexity.Â It is evolving at a rapid pace.â€
The total number of fraud offences reported in England and Wales nearly doubled in the last financial year.Â There were 230,845 frauds recorded in 2013/14 â€“ more than 630 a day â€“ compared to 122,240 the previous year, an 89 per cent increase.
Supt. Oâ€™Doherty said up to 70 per cent of frauds can be cyber-enabled compared to around 40 per cent five or so years ago.
He added: â€œCyber fraud has been described as the modern-day burglary because you donâ€™t have to be in someoneâ€™s home to steal from them.Â Fraudsters can strike from anywhere in the world.Â Itâ€™s a global threat.â€
Cyber crime is now estimated to cost Britain Â£27 billion a year with online shopping and auction scams, advanced fee frauds, online bank account cons and investment scams among the top â€œvolume fraudsâ€.
Extra funding is being given to police forces for specialist investigators and police forces like Warwickshire and West Mercia are working with interested partners to tackle the problem.
Victims should report incidents to Action Fraud, the national fraud and internet crime reporting centre, which recently merged with the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau.Â Contact Â http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/homeÂ or call 0300 123 2040.