Online Harms: the Growing Threat for Economic Crime

  • 09 Jun 2021
  • 17:00 - 18:00 (UTC-00:00)
  • Zoom Webinar

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Online Harms: the Growing Threat for Economic Crime

Recent analysis of nearly seven thousand scam cases undertaken by UK Finance (the trade association for the banking and finance industry) show that 70 per cent of those scams originated on an online platform — highlighting the internet’s significant role in enabling fraud. The new analysis comes as the government published the draft Online Safety Bill this month.   With the Covid-19 pandemic accelerating consumers’ shift online, fraudsters are adapting their tactics to exploit this societal change. In 2020, the banking and finance industry saw a jump in online-enabled push payment or bank transfer fraud.  Drilling down on findings from the new UK Finance dip sample shows that most investment (96 per cent), romance (96 per cent) and nearly all purchase (98 per cent) scams originated online. As it stands, the draft Online Safety Bill will tackle fraudulent investment schemes posted by users on social media – but will not tackle the same scam when digitally advertised or set up through a cloned website.

Graeme Biggar Director General National Economic Crime Centre (NECC) National Crime Agency and Karen Baxter Managing Director, Intelligence Strategy for Economic Crime, UK Finance will be talking about the issue of tackling fraud online and how the public and private sector can work together successfully to prevent it.

Speaker Bios:

Graeme Biggar CBE, was appointed Director General, National Economic Crime Centre (NECC) in March 2019.

The NECC is a collaborative, multi-agency centre established to deliver a step change in the response to tackling Serious Organised Economic Crime. It has been set up to protect the public, prosperity and UK’s reputation by leaving no safe space for criminals and reducing the threat of Economic Crime.

Graeme joined the agency from the Home Office where he had been Director National Security since 2016, providing leadership on the pursue element of the counter terrorism strategy and hostile state activity. His experience includes helping shape the response to the 2017 terrorist attacks, and the Salisbury attack; and overseeing the Investigatory Powers Act implementation programme across government.

Before joining the Home Office, Graeme worked for the MoD, in a series of policy and change management positions. He was Chief of Staff to the Defence Secretary from 2013 until 2016.

Karen Baxter joined UK Finance in October 2020 as the Managing Director for Intelligence Strategy.  Prior to this role she was a police officer for nearly 29 years starting her career in the Royal Ulster Constabulary and retiring from City of London Police.  Her final policing role was Commander and National Coordinator for Economic Crime across UK Policing.  Her responsibilities included Complex Fraud, Money Laundering, Overseas Anti-Corruption, Intellectual Property and the Economic Crime Academy.  She worked across government and a range of sectors to deliver on a National UK Fraud Policing Strategy and has been central in developing broader solutions to the challenges of Economic Crime across UK Law enforcement.  She deputised for the National Police Cyber lead and led on the ‘Protect strategy’ for Cyber policing across UK. 

As an investigator she has led and been operationally involved in virtually all aspects of serious crime investigation with a strong level of expertise in policing Organised Criminality, safeguarding, murder and kidnap.  She has an extensive understanding of the challenges and benefits of the effective use of intelligence from her role as Head of Terrorist Investigations in PSNI.

Karen has been key in other aspects of leadership such as diversity and inclusion and has actively been involved in the development of women and other minority groups across policing.  She has a degree in Social Policy and holds a (Mst) with the University of Cambridge. 

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