By Philip Johnston
Home Affairs Editor
A new police unit to tackle ''cybercrime'' is to be proposed by the
David Davis, the shadow home secretary, says a National Cybercrime Unit
would be backed up by specialist prosecutors in order to obtain more
convictions for offences such as internet violence, hacking and online
The Tories would also appoint a minister in the Home Office to be
directly responsible for co-ordinating policy against cybercrime.
A report published by the Tories warned that cybercrime is now growing
at a faster rate than can be dealt with by the law enforcement agencies.
"Cybercrime is a growing and very serious threat to individuals,
business and government," Mr Davis said last night. ''It is a problem
that will continue to escalate as technology changes."
The Tories' report called for a review of existing legislation ''to
ensure that it provides effective sanctions and offences to deal with
New laws could include an obligation on financial service companies to
report all malicious security incidents that affect their computer
In addition, companies that hold personal data on individuals would be
required to report any suspected incidents of hacking into their
The report continued: "We would create an offence of reckless handling
of personal data by government, making it an offence for a Crown Servant
or a government contractor to lose personal data from their control.
"The public also needs to be confident that appropriate measures are
being taken regarding the posting of images which incite abuse, violence
and race hate crime," it added.
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