RBS to advise City of London Police on cyber crime threat

Bank will deliver training sessions to detectives

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has agreed to advise the City of London Police on tackling cyber crime in the financial sector.

The partnership will see the bank's financial experts provide specialist guidance in a range of areas, including equities and markets, financial instruments and cyber technology.

As part of the agreement, the bank will assist the police force's Economic Crime Directorate on a voluntary basis through training events and research and development initiatives.

However, RBS staff will not be involved in any operational activity, the force said in a statement, and will not be consulted on information relating to specific investigations.

"Signing this agreement with RBS, which we hope will be the first of many with the financial sector, means we can now tap into their massive knowledge base of financial products and digital technology and use their foreign language skills, which reflects the increasingly international dimension of economic crime investigation," said Commissioner Adrian Leppard.

The City of London Police force is responsible for London's Square Mile financial district, and leads the UK's Action Fraud cyber crime reporting centre. Some estimate the cost of financial crime in the UK to be in the region of £73 billion a year, with digital technologies increasingly used to commit fraud.

In order to improve its capabilities, the police force recently unveiled a collaboration with security firm Kaspersky Labs. This involved training officers to identify and resolve cyber crimes ranging from individuals being defrauded while shopping online, to businesses losing thousands of pounds from a targeted attack.

In addition, the police force has also teamed up with British Bankers' Association (BBA) to provide bankers with skills and knowledge to help identify and tackle cyber crime.

The announcement of its collaboration with RBS comes as financial institutions, regulators and law enforcement attempt to improve cooperation to fight the growing threat of cyber crime.

Earlier this year, the findings of the second Waking Shark cyber resiliency test highlighted shortcomings in communications between banks and other organisations. This lead to the creation of a real-time alert system for online threats in the financial sector set up by the National Crime Agency.

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