Sussex and Surrey Police have joined forces to set up a new police unit to help combat on-line crime.
Surrey and Sussex Police are operating a joint Cybercrime Unit (CCU), which started in November this year.
The unit, partly funded through an increase in the police precept in 2014/15, secured by the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner, Katy Bourne, has been brought together across both forces and is building on findings from a pilot study to help shape new processes and initiatives.
Assistant Chief Constable Stuart Cundy, lead for the joint Surrey and Sussex Specialist Crime Command, said, “In the digital world, a wide range of cyber crime is taking place.
“In Surrey and Sussex, we have already recognised that there is a need to urgently increase the capacity and ability of the two forces to deal with this type of crime, to reduce the risks faced by local people. People live more of their lives online and criminality is already adapting to exploit this digital environment.”
Cyber crimes themselves are criminal acts committed through the use of computers or other technological devices, where the devices are both the tool for committing the crime and target of the crime.
Cyber-enabled crimes include online fraud, online theft, online sexual offending or any in which devices are used to organise or arrange other crimes.
Sussex Police has issued five tips on protecting yourself online, including using strong and memorable passwords, installing anti-virus software on new devices and checking privacy setting on social media. People are also advised to shop safely online - always checking online retail sites are secure - and to download software and application patches when prompted. For further advice, go to www.sussex.police.uk/policing-in-sussex/your-community/crime-prevention-advice/computers-and-internet.