Top cops warn on rising international e-crime

Top cops warn on rising international e-crime
Top cops warn on rising international e-crime 

By Angelica Mari
10 Jun 2008

The UK's Serious Organised Crime Agency [1] (Soca) has issued a warning 
about the increasing number of international online gangs stealing and 
trading personal details of web users.

A report issued by the agency says that groups of criminals - often 
comprising of an average of 30 specialists focused on areas ranging from 
phishing to data trading - are part of a market evolution geared at 
trading and exploiting data.

Information is often stolen through techniques such as phishing and key 
logging using malware sent via email. The stolen data is then used by 
the thieves for fraudulent purposes or sold to other cyber criminals 
over the web.

"As web-based technologies become increasingly diverse, e-criminals will 
use these services to access and exploit victims and conceal their 
activities," says the Soca report.

"Each group will typically have an inner circle of more technically 
advanced and/or experienced members who control access to the attack 
tools and are responsible for dividing up the work."

The tactics used by the criminals are constantly updated to keep ahead 
of protection offered by software vendors, according to Soca.

Last month, Soca completed the first phase of a five-year IT overhaul 
[2] to help in the battle against organised crime.

But the agency has admitted that it faced challenges in training staff 
to a level where the improvement will have a material effect on tackling 

Soca's annual reports said the "challenges involved in increasing 
knowledge to a level that would facilitate a transformation of the 
impact on organised crime still remained significant."

So far the programme has given overseas staff secure access to IT 
systems, improved the internal management of information and upgraded 
software to improve the collection of Suspicious Activity Reports a 
mechanism allowing the public to electronically report financial crime.

[2] http://http// 

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