Chinese cybercops 'nailing virus writers'

European police aren't good enough at fighting virtual crime and should learn from China, says Kaspersky Labs

A Chinese police force that is dedicated to fighting virus writers is getting results, according to Russian antivirus company Kaspersky Labs,

The Chinese antivirus police team will visit the Kaspersky Labs offices in Moscow next week to discuss virus development.

"China has worked effectively in fighting virus writers," said Natalya Kaspersky, chief executive of Kaspersky Labs, on Thursday. "They are much more active than anyone. They have special antivirus police that co-operates with industry. They want to learn more and I think that's a good practice. They regularly hire people and really seem to care about viruses."

But she added that hi-tech crime police in other countries are failing to perform as well as the Chinese in hunting virus writers.

"European police have realised the problem, but don't know what to do about it because it's a virtual problem. They need to change. I think they have a lot of work to do."

Kaspersky said she wanted her company to work more closely with government and police forces around the world.

"We are very proud that we caught one virus writer," she said. "But the sentence was something like [a fine of] $300. It was the first case of its kind. The problem for us is that in Russian law, you have to prove the damage someone has done. How could you find a witness to prove someone started an attack?"

The UK's National Hi-Tech Crime Unit is dedicated to fighting organised online crime, but currently individual users may only report isolated virus attacks to their local police station. Russia's counterpart to the NHTCU is its Ministry of Internal Affairs K Department.

Last week, security lobbyist EURIM said it was pushing the government to employ IT professionals as special constables. The group said that the proposed Serious Organised Crime Agency should be a central point of contact for computer crimes.

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