City of London Police Authority Board chair outlines need for collaboration to tackle fraud

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City of London Police Authority Board chair outlines need for collaboration to tackle fraud
Credit Unsplash

The Chair of the City of London Police Authority Board says collaboration will be key to battling fraudsters in the City and beyond.

James Thomson was speaking at the City of London Police Private Partnerships Dinner, an event that marked the 20th anniversary of the City of London Police’s Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit and the 10th anniversary of the force’s Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department.

He said that the world “is breeding criminals who are becoming endlessly innovative”, and “the sheer brashness of hostile states” puts the onus on the UK to collectively be even more innovative and forward looking.

Mr Thomson, who also chairs the National Cyber Resilience Centre Group, told an audience of UK law enforcement and security leaders the City of London Police, which is the National Lead Force for fraud and cybercrime, prevented nearly £750 million going into the pockets of fraudsters.

Thomson said the force had secured 1,000 convictions and cautions, and recovered assets worth almost £3 million for victims.

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But he said nearly half of all crime in England and Wales falls under the umbrella of fraud and economic crime, yet under two per cent of police funding nationally is dedicated towards this issue.

The former City of London Police Special Constable hailed the steps taken by the Government to investigate fraud.

He said: “We must not stop there. We need to be more hostile to those that commit fraud or enable fraud or threaten our cyber security.”

As part of his address, Thomson also welcomed the government’s decision to include paid-for advertising in the Online Safety Bill and include fraud as a priority harm.

He said that legislation should go further and pressed for changes in relation to disclosure requirements for fraud prosecutions and to introduce a duty of care on businesses to prevent fraud.

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