Feeds

UK.gov invests £4.3m in cyber-scam crackdown team

Scam sites targeted by e-Untouchables lite

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Updated The UK government has launched a specialist cyber-enforcement team and allocated extra funding for Trading Standards as part of a campaign designed to clamp down on online scams.

OFT figures suggest online scams claim 3 million UK marks every year and result in losses of £3.5bn. Approaches most often arrive in the form of scam emails.

The government is investing £4.3m over three years in a bid to clamp down on this growing source of crime. The money will allow the training and appointment of specialist trading standards enforcers in every region of England and in Scotland and Wales and the establishment of local computer labs.

Online ticket scams and scam websites that offer goods but deliver nothing in return will be main focus for the new teams. The OFT teams will target the most serious cyber-scams. Cases will continue to be passed to the police, Serious and Organised Crime Agency and other investigative agencies. The role of the OFT can loosely be compared to that of the US Federal Trade Commission though, of course, the OFT's budget and resources are far less.

Consumer Minister Kevin Brennan said: "Our investment will help the OFT and Trading Standards to put in place the new specialist teams, training and technology required to take the fight to these criminals."

An OFT spokesman explained told us that teams and remits were in the process of getting set up adding that numbers of staff were been "finalised". While the initial focus will be on scam websites and ticket fraud it is possible the agency may get involved in investigating cases of auction fraud, one of the most prevalent types of cybercrime, over time.

The Government recently established the Action Fraud, run by the National Fraud Authority, and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, which will be run through the City of London Police and will tackle the most serious and harmful fraud. Meanwhile the recently established Police Central eCrime Unit within the Metropolitan Police will tackle large-scale internet crime, including internet–enabled fraud. The OFT team is focused on dealing with consumer reports of cyber-crimes which might otherwise slip through the net.

Victims of fraud are advised to contact Consumer Direct on 08454 040506 or visit www.consumerdirect.gov.uk. Consumer Direct can provide advice and pass on complaints to the appropriate agency, such as the OFT. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Rupert Murdoch says Google is worse than the NSA
Mr Burns vs. The Chocolate Factory, round three!
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Germany 'accidentally' snooped on John Kerry and Hillary Clinton
Dragnet surveillance picks up EVERYTHING, USA, m'kay?
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
Think crypto hides you from spooks on Facebook? THINK AGAIN
Traffic fingerprints reveal all, say boffins
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.