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Wednesday 26 March 2014

Solent teams up with ACRO to fight crime

Researchers from Southampton Solent University are working with the Association of Chief Police Officers Criminal Records Office (ACRO) to crack down on one of the world’s fastest growing criminal activities – cybercrime.

Using the experiences and expertise of chief officers in the UK and USA, criminology experts from Southampton Solent are looking at ways to better understand, analyse and police online criminal activity.

Their findings will be shared with ACRO, providing a professional forum for ideas and international best practice, co-ordinate resources and help deliver effective policing and the public safety.

Dr Simon Fox, Senior Lecturer in Criminology at the University recently appeared as a keynote speaker at ACRO’s Becoming Cyber Savvy conference, alongside a panel of experts including Ian Readhead, Chief Executive at Association of Chief Police Officers, Director of Information at the Association of Chief Police Officers, and past Deputy Chief Constable, Dr Bray Barnes of SES Group (formerly US Dept. Homeland Security) and Dr Robert Bell of SES Group (formerly New Jersey State Police).

He told delegates at the packed conference attended by the Hampshire Police Service and their cyber-crime department, The Home Office, National Crime Agency, ACPO, and academia: “Cybercrime moves through countries’ borders with ease, and is carried on the back of technological innovation. Cybercrime offers the most pervasive means to do ‘wrong’ against others, and emphasises the need to overcome our jurisdictional differences.”

Speaking after the conference Dr Simon Fox said, “Fighting cybercrime is a real challenge for the law enforcement authorities. My colleague Dr Esther Snell and I have been doing some really interesting work, looking at how it is investigated, considering procedural powers and jurisdictional uncertainty.”

Recognising the need for further education in this area, the University is running cybercrime as a course unit within BA (Hons) Criminology. Dr Snell and Dr Fox are also in the process of developing courses on cybercrime security, for businesses and government bodies.

“It became evident from the ACPO conference that cybercrime is rapidly increasing, and we all need to educate ourselves for prevention and protection,” said Dr Fox.

If you see yourself working within this fascinating crime-fighting area, it’s not too late to apply for one of Southampton Solent University’s specialist criminology degree courses.