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Recent estimates show crime figures in England and Wales almost double when offences of fraud and cybercrime are taken into account, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The new statistics show that over 11.8 million crimes were committed between September 2015 to September 2016 alone. Unlike the previous Crime Survey of England and Wales, fraud and criminal computer offences were included for the first time ever – almost doubling the previous survey figure of approximately 6 million crimes.

Out of those crimes committed, 3.6 million related to fraud and 2 million were computer offences. Results of the survey were based on the answers given in interviews with individuals sharing their experiences of being victims of crime.

Fraud now accounts for nearly half of all crime recorded in England and Wales. It has become the nation’s most frequent criminal offence. The Office of National Statistics has documented that fraud has risen to 40% – a truly staggering figure.

However, the Head of Crime Statistics at the ONS, John Flatley, has emphasised that whilst the statistic of 11.8 million crimes is alarming, it is not comparable to previous ONS survey figures as new categories of crime have been added to the analysis and results.

For 35 years, The Crime Survey of England and Wales has not only been documenting crime statistics, but has also been tracking the changes and trends in crimes being committed and experienced by the nation’s people. In previous decades, the theft of motor vehicles and burglary were the crimes that once dominated the survey’s results, but in recent years numbers for these types of crimes have fallen dramatically.

The Crime Survey for England and Wales has measured crime in since 1981, although it’s important to note that the internet had not even been invented when the survey was introduced. Fraud was not considered a substantial threat to the public back in 1981. Seeing it recorded as the most common crime committed today simply demonstrates the magnitude of changing trends of crimes in England and Wales.

In addition to rising fraud and cybercrime, the results of the survey also show noticeable increases in police recorded violence, homicide and knife crime. There has been a 22% rise in violent crime overall. Yet despite these increases, the ONS has noted changes in recording processes and additional harassment offences including revenge porn and internet trolling are now being included, contributing to these higher figures.

In addition to rising fraud and cybercrime, the results of the survey also show noticeable increases in police recorded violence, homicide and knife crime. There has been a 22% rise in violent crime overall. Yet despite these increases, the ONS has noted changes in recording processes and additional harassment offences including revenge porn and internet trolling are now being included, contributing to these higher figures.

Cybercrime, and how to combat it, is very much a focus for Fresh01 and its clients. We are currently working on multiple awareness support campaigns, all of which are aimed at changing the cultural and behavioural attitudes within global corporations. These assets will be rolled out across high-end eLearning modules, film and marketing campaigns. Please do contact [email protected] if you would like to discuss how best to tackle cybercrime as an organisation.

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