Tag Archives: James Brokenshire MP

UK Government campaign urges citizens to be Cyber Streetwise

A new campaign designed to change the way in which people protect themselves while shopping, banking or socialising online in order to avoid falling victim to cyber criminals has been launched today by the UK Government.

The Cyber Streetwise campaign aims to change the way people view online safety and provide members of the public and businesses alike with the necessary skills and knowledge required for them to take control of their own cyber security.

Building on the National Cyber Security Programme1, the campaign includes a new easy-to-use website and online videos.

With more than 11 million Internet-enabled devices received as gifts during the Christmas period2, Cyber Streetwise will help in the fight against online criminals. People are encouraged to protect themselves and their families online by visiting the website for tips and advice.

The new website, http://www.cyberstreetwise.com, offers a range of interactive resources, tailoring an individual’s visit to provide clear advice on the essentials for enjoying a safe experience online.

Security minister James Brokenshire

Security minister James Brokenshire

Security minister James Brokenshire said: “The Internet has radically changed the way we work and socialise. It has created a wealth of opportunities, but with these opportunities there are also threats. As a Government we are taking the fight to cyber criminals wherever they are in the world.”

Brokenshire continued: “‘However, by taking a few simple steps while online the public can keep cyber criminals out and their information safe. Cyber Streetwise is an innovative new campaign that will provide everyone with the knowledge and confidence to make simple and effective changes to stay safe online.”

National Cyber Security Programme

The launch of the campaign is part of the UK Government’s National Cyber Security Programme1 and comes at a time when an increasing number of people use the web on their laptops, tablets and smart phones.

Findings from the Government’s most recent National Cyber Security Consumer Tracker3 suggest that more than half the population are not taking simple actions to protect themselves online.

While 94% of people believe it’s their personal responsibility to ensure a safe Internet experience, the research highlights the facts that:

• only 44% always install Internet security software on new equipment
• only 37% download updates and patches for personal computers when prompted… a figure which falls even further to a fifth (21%) for smart phones and mobile devices
• less than a third (30%) habitually use complex passwords to protect online accounts
• 57% do not always check websites are secure before making a purchase

The Cyber Streetwise campaign underlines that safety precautions taken in the real world have similar relevance in the virtual world. Research shows that shoppers don’t adopt the same behaviours when shopping online as contrasted with shopping on the High Street. A person wouldn’t walk around with their bag open or wallet on show yet, when shopping online and due to the speed of technology, people can be open to unnecessary risk if they’re not careful when using their credit card.

Five key actions to prevent cyber crime

There are five actions people can take in order to protect themselves and others from cyber crime. The key behaviours the campaign is focusing on changing are:

1. Using strong, memorable passwords
2. Installing anti-virus software on new devices
3. Checking privacy settings on social media
4. Shopping safely online, always ensuring to check online retail sites are secure
5. Downloading software and application patches when prompted

The research shows our biggest concerns when it comes to online safety are identity theft (48%) and losing money (52%). 16% of those surveyed claim to have lost at least £500 as a result of having their card details stolen and used over the Internet (representing a total loss of more than £4 billion).

Almost a third (32%) of those who admit to not installing security software on Internet-enabled devices blame a lack of understanding, while around a fifth (18%) say they did not realise the risk.

With initial funding allocated from the Government’s National Cyber Security Programme, the Cyber Streetwise campaign has been joined by a number of private sector partners who are providing support and investment. Among those involved are Sophos, Facebook, the RBS Group and Financial Fraud Action UK.

References

1. For further information on the National Cyber Security Programme, visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/policies/keeping-the-uk-safe-in-cyberspace

2. Figure provided by retail experts Conlumino and based on items bought in the five weeks up to and including Christmas Week 2013. Figure includes tablets, smart phones, connected e-readers, laptops, desktops and connected games consoles. Data derived from Christmas tracker which surveyed 22,762 consumers over the run-up to Christmas 2013

3. National Cyber Security Consumer Tracker – Wave 3, October 2013

Figure based on 16% of the adult UK population (8,028,924) Population Estimates for UK, England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, Mid-2012 Release, Office for National Statistics, 8 August 2013

4. Cyber Streetwise is a cross-Government awareness and behaviour change campaign delivered by the Home Office in conjunction with the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills alongside the National Crime Agency and Action Fraud and supported by the National Cyber Security Programme (Cabinet Office)

5. The campaign has wide support across industry with over 20 organisations providing access to communications channels to reach their customers or providing monetary support. Organisations involved include: Sophos, Facebook, Financial Fraud Action UK, RBS, Trend Micro and Vodafone

6. The Cyber Streetwise campaign launched on Monday 13 January 2014 with outdoor, radio and digital advertising. The advertising campaign has been designed by M&C Saatchi. To view and download assets please visit: http://www.consolpr.com/outbound/JAN/Cyberstreetwisecollateral.zip

7. To view the online videos visit: http://www.youtube.com/user/becyberstreetwise/videos

Leave a comment

Filed under IFSECGlobal.com News

Operation Captura praised by UK and Spanish security ministers

UK and Spanish security ministers have highlighted the recent successes under Operation Captura, a seven-year campaign run jointly by the National Crime Agency and the UK’s Crimestoppers charity.

The end of the era when British criminals on the run can find sanctuary on Spain’s southern ‘Costas’ is in sight. That’s the message from Home Office security minister James Brokenshire and Spanish security minister Francisco Martínez Vázquez, who spoke at a meeting in London this week.

The ministers reviewed recent successes under Operation Captura, a seven-year campaign run jointly by the National Crime Agency and the UK’s Crimestoppers charity. Through concerted publicity activity and public information, together with tough enforcement action, 56 of the 76 drug dealers, violent robbers and sex offenders on the run have been arrested and brought to justice in the UK.

The ministers also looked ahead to the UK’s integration in October 2014 with the second generation Schengen Information System (SIS II). SIS II is a European computer network which will make it easier and more efficient for police forces and officers at borders across Europe to share information in real time about criminals, their vehicles and documents.

Spanish security minister Francisco Martínez Vázquez (left) and James Brokenshire, security minister at the UK Home Office

Spanish security minister Francisco Martínez Vázquez (left) and James Brokenshire, security minister at the UK Home Office

As well as helping the police in the UK to arrest criminals on the run in Europe, SIS II will also improve other countries’ abilities to identify foreign offenders hiding in the UK.

Once they have been found, the European Arrest Warrant means they can be extradited from the UK to the countries in which they are wanted.

More than 4,000 wanted people have been removed from the UK in the past four years, including 57 people wanted for child sex offences, 105 people wanted for murder and 86 people wanted for rape.

In a joint statement, the ministers said: “With over three quarters of Britain’s most wanted in Spain arrested over the last five years, the message is clear: there is no hiding place for criminals on the run. This is good for both our countries.

“The efforts of our police and security agencies, supported by the excellent work of Crimestoppers and the Operation Captura campaign, have had a substantial effect. It’s a great example of cross-border policing and security co-operation in action. We are determined that it will continue and determined to work together even more closely to deprive criminals of the proceeds of their crimes by recovering their assets.

“We look forward to strengthening and deepening our co-operation next year with the UK connecting to SIS II. It offers a powerful new means of sharing information on wanted criminals between our police and other law enforcement agencies on a quick and accurate basis. It will help us build on achievements to date and turn up the heat on any fugitives still at large.”

Leave a comment

Filed under IFSECGlobal.com News

Christmas shoppers warned to be vigilant when buying online

Action Fraud, the City of London Police and Get Safe Online are warning consumers to take extra care when shopping online for tablets, games consoles, electrical items and other Christmas gifts.

Last Christmas, fraudsters conned consumers out of more than £12 million through online shopping and auction scams. Action Fraud received more than 10,000 reports, with the average loss to victims more than £1,700.

Record numbers are expected to log-on for Christmas shopping this year, in turn creating opportunities for retailers and bargain hunters but also presenting opportunities for fraudsters.

Last year, fraudsters conned consumers out of more than £12 million over Christmas through online shopping and auction scams

Last year, fraudsters conned consumers out of more than £12 million over Christmas through online shopping and auction scams

Security minister James Brokenshire said: “We are taking the fight to cyber criminals with the newly-created National Cyber Crime Unit, which is part of the National Crime Agency, but the public should also stay vigilant to ensure they don’t lose their hard-earned money on fakes and frauds. Following straightforward steps while shopping online will help the public to avoid cyber fraudsters.”

Brokenshire added: “Shoppers can find great bargains online ahead of Christmas, and this time of year provides a welcome boost to retailers, but shoppers should remember if something looks too good to be true that’s often the case.”

Looking out for the warning signs

Action Fraud experts say that even the most confident online shopper can be caught out by professional fraudsters. Fraudsters often target vulnerable shoppers who are unsure in using modern technology.

Consumers should look out for the warning signs that a website may not be secure. Action Fraud, Get Safe Online and the City of London Police (who run the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau) encourage online shoppers to be particularly careful when using new websites and sites that offer deals that look too good to be true.

By following these simple tips you can keep fraudsters at bay this Christmas:

1. Trust your instincts: if an offer looks too good to be true it usually is. Legitimate popular technology and designer items are rarely discounted
2. Check the URL in the web browser. Don’t be fooled by spoof websites where the address is slightly different
3. Ensure the website address begins ‘https’ at the payment stage (this indicates a secure payment)
4. Don’t access links in unsolicited e-mails. Always type in the website address or use a search engine to find a site
5. Only deal with reputable sellers. Only use sites you know or ones that have been recommended to you
6. Avoid paying by money transfers direct to people you don’t know. Use an online payment option such as PayPal which helps to protect you
7. Watch out for pop-ups appearing asking you to confirm your card details before you’re on the payment stage. Never enter your PIN number online
8. If your bid for an online auction item is unsuccessful, don’t be tempted to trade off-site if another seller approaches you with a similar item. This is likely to be a scam and you will not be covered
9. Keep security software and firewalls up-to-date. Regularly update your Internet browser when a new patch (security update) is released
10. Keep receipts and check these against your statement. If you spot a transaction you did not authorise speak to your card company immediately.

Scams change and adapt

Tony Neate, CEO of Get Safe Online, said: “£12.4 million is a huge amount of money to be lost to online fraud but, unfortunately, it’s the type of figure I see every year. The problem is, scams change and adapt as trends come and go. Scammers have also become more sophisticated as we get wiser to what is and isn’t legitimate so it’s understandable that people sometimes get caught out.”

Neate added: “We know how busy and stressful Christmas can be so we don’t want to overwhelm people with complicated advice, but we urge consumers to keep the basics in mind as a good preventative measure. It’s easy to get carried away when you spot a bargain online for that gift you’ve been all over the High Street trying to find, but take a step back and think before you buy it. Is it too good to be true?”

Detective Chief Superintendent Dave Clark, director of the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, commented: “Online shopping has revolutionised the way in which we buy our Christmas presents, with each year more and more people choosing to search for gifts over the Internet rather than heading to the shops. However, the result is that online fraud is top of the festive scam list.”

He continued: “To reverse this trend, we all need to be extra careful about what we’re buying online and from whom, especially if it is popular technology at a reduced price. By carrying out all the necessary checks you should guarantee that your presents will be enjoyed by friends and family and not lost to fraudsters.”

Items most at risk from fraud

Based on an analysis from last year, the items most sought after – and therefore most at risk from fraud – are smart phones. However, electronic goods in general, including computers, tablets, laptops, games consoles and e-readers were also very popular.

In January, the Government and partners will be launching a new campaign to increase public and small and medium enterprises’ confidence online by helping them to adopt simple changes to their online behaviour.

Private sector partners who have joined the campaign include Financial Fraud Action UK, Sophos, the RBS Group, Trend Micro and Facebook who are providing investment and support.

If you or someone you know has been a victim of this type of fraud, report it to Action Fraud so that the incident can be passed to the police.

Christmas shopping tips from Get Safe Online

http://www.getsafeonline.org/themes/ChristmasCampaign/index.php

Leave a comment

Filed under IFSECGlobal.com News