Hackers: Looking forward to 'hacking field-day'

Recommendations put forward by The National Criminal Intelligence Service's Trawler report last month, could lead to a "hacking field-day" according to the Metropolitan police Computer Crime Prevention unit.

DC Paul Cox, an investigator at the unit says Trawler is trying to amalgamate all aspects of computer crime. " If that happens then the subject of the day -- pornography -- would take precedence and we simply wouldn't get off the ground with hacking, says Cox. "Hackers would have a field day."

The Trawler report, three years in the making, was published on June 22. Director general of NCIS, John Abbott, said at the time: "I believe serious consideration should be given to the establishment of a national investigative computer crime unit to combat the growing numbers of computer crimes being carried out in the UK and to identify and target emerging threats."

But Cox sees another problem with this suggestion. "This report is not what business wants either," he says, arguing that it would weaken Police powers. "More than 90% of the stuff we deal with is businesses being hacked."

Cox believes it is far more important to reform the 1977 Criminal misuse act. "We are meeting with some of our American counterparts and we're hoping they'll bring some of their legislation with them."

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