Published: 30 September 2014

Member of Surrey Centre of Cyber Security helps highlight the increased commercialisation of cybercrime

Professor Alan Woodward is one of only three external contributors to a significant new report on organised crime in the online world.

Written by Europol's Cybercrime Centre (EC3), with input from three advisers including Professor Alan Woodward, who is part of the Surrey Centre for Cyber Security (SCCS), the report gives decision and policy makers a complete overview of the threat posed by cybercrime, particularly organised cybercrime across Europe.

The report shows that cybercrime is developing to serve a growing dark economy with ‘crime as a service’ where organised gangs can access highly skilled people to enable them to engage law enforcement agencies in an ongoing arms race.  The findings also show how legitimate technologies are being misappropriated by criminals, as well as ‘traditional crimes’ being enhanced by using emerging technologies.

Professor Woodward explains, “Modern cybercrime, especially organised crime, is by nature transnational – so it’s vital that we take an international view of the threat posed by this ever-increasing form of crime. EC3’s able to provide a unique perspective on this threat as it has access to data from law enforcement agencies across Europe. It should be seen as a vital piece of work which should be read by all policy makers and decision makers involved in combatting cybercrime.

“If agencies fail to mobilise to meet the threats highlighted in this report, then organised cybercrime will gain the upper hand. However, if agencies work together, across borders, then we can use modern technologies to catch criminals, rather giving them a platform for ever more innovative forms of crime.

“Whether you’re a legislator, regulator or law enforcement agency, this report is intended to help make decisions based upon the actual state of threat.  It covers trends such as the development of crime as a service, use of anonymising technologies enabling criminals to hide, as well as emergence of ‘dark’ forms of payment which is how criminals are able to send money around the globe without being traced.”

This threat assessment is an ongoing exercise by EC3 and further publications will be issued to help those who need to know stay up-to-date with the threat as it emerges.

Read the full report:



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