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Businesses turn out in force for North Wales Cyber Security Cluster launch

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Photo: Peter Jarvis, Detective Sergeant of the North Wales Police Cyber Crime Team, speaking at the launch of North Wales Cyber Security Cluster

28 July 2015

Businesses in North Wales are to get a new forum to confidentially report cybercrime in a bid to drive up its detection and prevention.

Peter Jarvis, Detective Sergeant of the North Wales Police Cyber Crime Team, said the launch of a new North Wales Cyber Security Cluster would help businesses work directly with specialists in the region’s police force to tackle criminal activity involving computers and the internet.

Set up by Glyndŵr University in conjunction with Wrexham-based secure web development firm Hashtag Marketing the cluster aims to bring together police, business and academia to share expertise and knowledge in the fight against cybercrime.

More than 2,000 cybercrimes were reported to North Wales Police last year but none involving issues such as stolen data or denial-of-service attacks – where criminals flood traffic to a website, making it inaccessible for genuine users.

Mr Jarvis said: “We are receiving an increase in the number of cybercrimes reported by young people relating to issues on social media but it is cybercrimes against businesses which are going undetected at the moment.

“We recognised that people need the confidence to report crimes where data has been stolen and hopefully this new cluster can be a forum to drive that.”

Tech businesses from the region were well-represented at the launch of the fledgling cluster, the 18th of its kind to start in the UK.

The clusters have been established as part of a 2011 Government strategy to address the issue of cyber security.

As well as receiving talks from North Wales Police and an introduction from John Davies, director at Pervade Software and co-founder of the South Wales Cyber Security Cluster, topics for future meetings were discussed.

Glyndŵr University Professor Vic Grout, Professor of Computing Futures, gave his thoughts on the future of cyber security threats, discussing some of the biggest potential weaknesses in current and future systems.

“We were delighted with the response from everyone and the strong attendance at the first event,” said Vic.

“This is a major cooperation of academia, business, the police and public in the North Wales and one which we hope will grow over the coming months. The problem of cybercrime isn’t going away – in fact, it’s going to get worse - and we can’t afford to ignore it.”

Jason Davies, of Hashtag Marketing, said: "With over 20 attendees from across the region representing a wide variety of sectors, we were really pleased with the turnout and are looking forward to seeing the cluster grow in the months to come."

The next meeting of the North Wales Cyber Security Cluster is on Thursday August 20 from 2pm to 4pm. For more information email v.grout@glyndwr.ac.uk or jason.davies@hashtagmarketing.co.uk

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