Rudd to promise funding to tackle dark web

11 Apr 18

The government has pledged to crack down on cybercrime and the ‘dark web’ with a £9m funding boost.

The so-called dark web offers anonymity for the illicit sale of firearms, drugs, malware and people.

Home secretary Amber Rudd will speak today at a cyber security conference in Manchester where she is expected to say: “[The dark web is] a dark and dangerous place where anonymity emboldens people to break the law in the most horrifying of ways.”

The £9m funding package would “enhance the UK’s specialist law enforcement response”, she will say.

The funds are part of a wider £50m that will aim to give police the capability to tackle cyber crime at a national, regional and local level over the next two years.

The government wants a dedicated cyber crime unit to be established in each police force.

Currently only 30% of local police forces have a cyber capability that reaches the minimum standard.

Rudd will say: “The world of cyber is fast-developing and we need a fast-developing response to match.”

“[The £50m of funding] will mean that cyber crimes are investigated thoroughly and police can support local businesses and local victims, providing the advice and care they need.

“Because whilst criminals plot and hide behind their screens, their actions have real-life consequences for their victims.”

The £50m of funding comes from the government’s £860m National Cyber Security Programme and existing Home Office budgets.

A recent study by the National Cyber Security Centre and the National Crime Agency noted that criminals now have access to “nation-state grade capabilities”.

In 2016, Chancellor Phillip Hammond announced the National Cyber Security Strategy, which committed £1.9bn to making UK secure and resilient to cyber threats.

Since 2015, the Home Office has spent more than £150m to tackle cyber crime.

See PF’s report on how local authorities are dealing with cyber security threats.

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