As from 11 January 2013 the new European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) will be up and running to help protect European citizens and businesses from cyber crime.
The European Commission set out to create a cybercrime centre that would function as the European focal point for illegal online activities, supporting EU Member States and the European Union’s institutions in building operational and analytical capacity for investigations and cooperation with international partners.
The European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) will be established at the European Police Office, Europol in the Hague, the Netherlands, and will be funded from the general Europol budget.
Cyber crime is very much a problem in the EU and worldwide. A recent report by Europol showed that there remains a very active criminal market in payment card fraud in Europe, pulling in around 1.5 billion EUR a year for the organised crime groups involved. In addition, the European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) is warning that innovations in mobile and cloud computing, as well as social technology present an emerging risk to organisations’ IT security.
The EC3 will focus on illegal online activities carried out by organised crime groups, especially attacks targeting e-banking and other online financial activities, online child sexual exploitation and those crimes that affect the critical infrastructure and information systems in the EU.
The official opening of EC3 is to take place at 10:00 today, followed by a press conference and an EC3 expo, during which the Centre’s analysts and specialists will inform the public about the activities of EC3.
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